Lora Timmons has been a higher education professional for 27 years, holding a variety of different roles from faculty, academic advisor and director of education to dean at two mid-sized, private universities in Chicago. She currently serves as the dean for nursing and health care at GateWay Community College in Phoenix, Arizona, a huge move she made in the middle of COVID (since she has lived in the Chicago area her whole life)! Working with first-year students has consistently been a passion for Lora, so this career choice seemed to be the right move in a much larger educational system. Much of her experience has been focused on curriculum development, accreditation initiatives, experiential learning and first year experience programming.
Lora has earned a Master’s in Public Health from Northern Illinois University and a Bachelor’s in Exercise Science from Iowa State University. Lora’s breadth of experience has provided her a well-rounded understanding of different levels of the university environment, but she has been missing the doctoral level degree in her career. As Lora’s kids all hit college, she thought why not join them in studying and started looking into a doctoral program.
While her initial thought was an educational doctoral degree, her friend in human resources came across Logan’s Doctorate of Health Professions Education (DPHE) degree and also found it was part of their tuition exchange program. That was a game changer, as studying education, specifically suited to her health care background, was a dream come true. Her advice for anyone looking to further their education is to just go for it! At the end of the day, you can accomplish anything you set your mind to, and it is such a feeling of accomplishment. Another piece of advice is to use good time management. Keeping up on projects and discussions is much easier when you “plan” when and where you are going to accomplish assignments and, after a couple of semesters, it is second nature.
In her free time, of which she is looking to have much more come December 2021, Lora loves traveling and spending quality time with her family that includes her husband, three children, and two dogs. The first order of business will be lots of weekend road trips to see the western states, an area she has not spent much time in until moving that way. She also cannot wait to start reading novels again and not textbooks!