Joan Clites : CAL U

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A student conducts an experiment in one of the labs at Cal U.A student conducts an experiment in one of the labs at Cal U.

Dr. Joan Clites


  • B.S.N.: University of Pittsburgh
  • M.S.N.: West Virginia University
  • Ed.D.: West Virginia University


Dr. Clites, Ed.D., RN, C, has 24 years' experience in higher education. She is currently certified in gerontological nursing.

As a nursing faculty member, Dr. Clites worked at Waynesburg College from 1985-1994. She was chair of Waynesburg's Nursing Department from 1994-1999. During that time, she was instrumental in developing the school's accelerated RN to BSN program. She has since served as the nursing education administrator in a two-year associate's degree and RN to BSN nursing program at Penn State's Fayette County campus and as chair of a four-year undergraduate BSN program in the Midwest. Over the years, Dr. Clites developed skills to help pre-licensure programs dealing with low numbers of students who pass the National Council of State Boards of Nursing Licensing Examination (N-CLEX).

Since that time, Dr. Clites has gone on to develop/revise an RN to BSN nursing program for a small liberal arts college in the Harrisburg, Pa., area. Contacted by the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences (USC), she helped to prepare a plan to establish an undergraduate School of Nursing within USC with responsibilities that included designing a program and curriculum for a new upper-division undergraduate BSN program with pre-licensure and RN to BSN options. As a strong supporter of the need for faculty mentoring, Dr. Clites most recently presented at a national nursing conference geared toward new faculty on the topic of "Classroom Management: Civility in the Classroom."

At Cal U, Dr. Clites teaches RN to BSN students.


  • Health Assessment
  • Family Health Assessment

Research Interests

Dr. Clites is interested in gerontological nursing. She also is interested in ways to encourage two-year graduates of nursing programs to earn the BSN.

Student Research Projects

A grant that Dr. Clites wrote and that received funding helped past graduates of a two-year nursing program pass the NCLEX-RN.

Service Learning Projects

Dr. Clites is relatively new to the area. But over the years, she has been involved in numerous community projects including hospice, adult day care, the American Red Cross, shelters for domestic violence and other community health initiatives. Currently, her projects provide support for community food banks and animal rescue shelters.

Academic Department(s)

  • Department of Nursing

Academic Program(s)

  • B.S. Nursing
  • Online R.N. to B.S. Nursing
  • M.S. Nursing Administration and Leadership


"Many years ago, I made a personal commitment to do whatever I could to help registered nurses who had graduated from a two-year nursing program to earn a bachelor's or higher degree in nursing. This comes from my fundamental belief in learning as a lifelong process. Being able to teach at California University provides an opportunity to fulfill that goal on two levels: by currently teaching in the RN to BSN program and, eventually, by teaching in the new master's in nursing program."

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