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Nursing and Health Sciences

Health Sciences Department, Medical Sciences Department, and Nursing Department

Dwight Schar College of Nursing and Health Sciences


Carrie Keib

Health Sciences

Dietetics: Denise Reed

Exercise Science: Randall Gearhart

Master of Science Applied Exercise Science: Randall Gearhart

Medical Sciences

Physician Assistant Studies: Melissa Irwin

PA Medical Director: Jason Strauss


Accelerated/Advanced Entry Nursing: Juanita Reese Kline

Doctor of Nursing Practice: Jill Matthes Baxter

Doctor of Nursing Practice FNP Track: Julie Jubak (interim)

Doctor of Nursing Practice HSL Track: Jill Matthes Baxter (interim)

Nurse Educator Certificate:  T. Jody Hostetler

RN to BSN Nursing: Jacqueline Owens

School Nursing Certificate: Jennifer Boles

Traditional Nursing: Juanita Reese Kline


Sports Nutrition Counseling:  David Vanata

Program Clinical Coordinators

Exercise Science:  Beth Patton

Medical Sciences:  Jaimee Vanderbilt, Anita Wheitner

Nursing: Jennifer McElwain, Michelle Ash

Faculty and Clinical Education Staff

Health Sciences

Randall Gearhart, Professor

Beth Patton, Associate Professor

David Vanata, Associate Professor

Denise Reed, Clinical Assistant Professor

Medical Sciences

Chair: Melissa Irwin, Clinical Assistant Professor

Amity Arnold, Clinical Assistant Professor

Maria Esbenshade, Clinical Assistant Profssor

Emily Keller, Clinical Assistant Professor

Stephanie Lamport, Clinical Assistant Professor

Wm. Douglas Urban, Clinical Assistant Professor


Chair: Juanita Reese Kline, Associate Professor

Jacqueline Owens, Professor

Jill Matthes Baxter, Associate Professor

T. Jody Hostetler, Assistant Professor

Patricia Clayburn, Clinical Assistant Professor

Jada Craze, Clinical Assistant Professor

Laura Gilmore, Clinical Assistant Professor

Julie Jubak, Clinical Assistant Professor

Teresa Moorman, Clinical Assistant Professor

Sharon See, Clinical Assistant Professor

Angy Alkire, Clinical Education Staff

Ashley Christman, Clinical Education Staff

Allison Lowry, Clinical Education Staff

Tina Myers, Clinical Education Staff

Daniel Nolt, Clinical Education Staff

Degrees Offered

Bachelor of Science

Bachelor of Science in Nursing

Master of Science in Applied Exercise Science

Master of Science in Physician Assistant Studies

Doctor of Nursing Practice



Exercise Science


Physician Assistant Studies

College Mission

The mission of the College of Nursing and Health Sciences is to educate individuals to become health care professionals committed to health related practice, leadership, and service. The programs provide undergraduate and graduate education in health science professions. Our guiding values are integrity, caring, accountability, respect, and excellence. Our vision is to be the premier College of Nursing and Health Sciences in the Midwest, educating graduates to serve a global and diverse society.

College Facilities

The Health Sciences Department is located in the Arthur L. and Maxine Sheets Rybolt Recreation and Health Sciences Center. The state-of-the-art center houses six fully equipped multi-media classrooms, a 4,000 square foot athletic training room, and the 1,600 square foot Messerly Human Performance Laboratory. The Recreation Center contains a walking/running track, fitness center, golf simulator, racquetball court, climbing wall, billiard lounge, natatorium, two basketball courts, and a multi-purpose court.

The AU Sports Nutrition Counseling Center, is also located in the Arthur L. and Maxine Sheets Rybolt Recreation Center, and provides individual nutrition counseling sessions for student-athletes targeting concerns such as:

  • Athletic performance, muscle recovery & strength

  • Injury prevention and treatment

  • Recovery nutrition

  • Hydration

  • Macronutrients & micronutrients

  • Safe and effective use of supplements

  • Injury prevention and treatment

  • Food allergies/sensitivities

  • Macronutrient or micronutrient needs

  • Additional services include team presentations, cafeteria tours, and assessment of dietary options when traveling

Students enrolled in the physician assistant and nursing programs will take classes on the AU main campus, in classroom and laboratory/simulation spaces located at 1020 S. Trimble Road, Mansfield, and in the on-line environment. Campus housing is available on both the Ashland University main campus and the Mansfield campus.

Simulated learning experiences are a vital part of education for health care professionals. The Simulation Center on the Mansfield campus includes a health foundations laboratory, family health laboratory, adult health laboratory, complex health laboratory, advanced care laboratories, community health laboratory, and examination rooms. High and mid-level fidelity simulators are computerized and interactive. They may be programmed to give realistic patient responses and outcomes. Simulation is used to teach the basics of patient care, communication, teamwork, and critical thinking. Students participate in complex patient care such as cardiac arrest, prioritization, and delegation scenarios. Simulation for graduate students include advanced assessment skills and standardized patients. Simulation is not a replacement for clinical, but supplements clinical experiences, enhancing student outcomes.