WSU nursing program pioneer to receive Dixon Award
Friday, February 05, 1999
OGDEN, Utah - Weber State University nursing professor Gerry Hansen could be described as a walking history book. Brick-by-brick she has witnessed WSU's campus grow from four small buildings into the institution that stands today. At the beginning of her teaching career in 1959, the school's fledgling nursing program was home to five faculty members and a modest 40 students. With her help, the department has gained national recognition and blossomed into a baccalaureate program, available in several states, with more than 50 professors and nearly 600 students.
In recognition of her dedication to WSU and the nursing profession, Hansen will receive the 1999 H. Aldous Dixon Award. The Ogden resident will be honored during a luncheon Feb. 26 at noon in the Shepherd Union Ballroom.
"H. Aldous Dixon was a warm and skillful president during Weber's founding years. In his memory, the award has been presented annually since 1970 to an outstanding faculty or staff member," said Jodi Kilcup, executive director of Alumni Relations. "We are delighted to honor Gerry this year. Throughout her 40-year career at WSU, she has strived for excellence and touched numerous lives. This will be an especially heart-warming ceremony since she is retiring from WSU this spring."
Recipients are chosen based on outstanding service and leadership. Hansen was selected for the award by the Alumni Association's Board of Directors. She was nominated by students, peers and alumni. The recognition will be accompanied by a $500 cash award which was donated by Dixon's daughter, Ruth Cannon of Salt Lake City.
"I have loved my work at WSU and seeing the nursing department evolve. Over the years, hundreds of our students have graduated and gone on to positively impact the quality of Utah health care, particularly in rural areas," Hansen said. "This is the perfect ending to my career. It's an honor to be listed among the recipients of this award who shared a commitment to our university and providing quality higher education."
Currently the director of the nursing program, Hansen holds an associate degree from Weber State College, a bachelor's degree from the University of Utah, two master's and a doctorate degree from Brigham Young University. She also has served terms as nursing department chairwoman (1979-80) and assistant chairwoman (1973-79). Additionally, her career has included active duty in the U.S. Army Nurse Corps, as well as service at McKay-Dee, Thomas Dee Memorial and LDS Hospitals.
The public is invited to attend the Feb. 26 luncheon. Cost of the event is $10 per person. Reservations must be made prior to Feb. 22 by calling 626-7535.
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