History of the Nursing Program

Sarah Wimp
Sarah Grim Wimp Peavler

In 1960, Sarah Grim Wimp Peavler (’29) was charged by University President Walter H. Ryle with the responsibility of re-establishing Truman State University’s nursing program in the Division of Health and Physical Education. From that time through 1970, she served as the director of nursing.

During the early 1970s, Dr. Grace Devitt restructured the program as a Division of Nursing; the program offering a Bachelor of Science in nursing degree was developed. With Dr. Devitt’s leadership, the new program and curriculum was implemented, with the first class to complete the entire new curriculum graduating in 1976.

Grace Devitt
Grace Devitt

The Nursing Program was first accredited by the National League for Nursing in 1978, as a young program offering a high quality education to students. In May 2003, the baccalaureate degree nursing program received accreditation by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education for a ten year period.

In 1992, restructuring at the University level occurred, resulting in the formation of a new Division, the Division of Human Potential and Performance, which included Nursing along with the Communication Disorders and Health and Exercise Science Programs. Since 1992, the Nursing Program has undergone significant curricular changes leading to continued new and innovative approaches to nursing education at Truman.

Today, the Nursing Department is housed within Truman’s School of Health Sciences and Education.

Nursing Department