College of Health Professions
Karla Larson, Ph.D., MSN, RN
Dean of Health Professions and Associate Professor of Nursing

Ph.D., Capella University
MSN, University of Minnesota
BSN, Bethel University

Dr. Larson is a nationally recognized expert in the development of diversity sensitivity among healthcare professionals and leadership, with more than 20 years of experience in the development of quality nursing education programs, nursing faculty, curricula, regulations, and policies — both locally and nationally.  The topic of Karla’s dissertation topic and an area of ongoing interest is the Intercultural Sensitivity of Nursing Faculty. Her ongoing passion is to build an inclusive and culturally sensitive teaching and learning environment, with application to teaching for healthcare to help eliminate healthcare inequities.  She has a calling to promote global citizenry awareness as a responsibility for every person through the lens of a Christ-like perspective.  She has served in local and international short- and long-term missions including Israel, Gaza, Honduras, East Biloxi, and the inner-city of Minneapolis.

Dr. Larson served as assistant dean for nursing at Maryville University, director of nursing academic services for Orbis Education, dean of academic affairs for Chamberlain University, associate dean of faculty for the School of Nursing at Kaplan Higher Education, director of professional services for HCR ManorCare, as well as a host of nursing faculty positions at the assistant professor, professor, and director levels.  Her areas of expertise include program and faculty development, home care, long-term care, hospice, intercultural sensitivity, and death anxiety.  She is a member of American Nurses Association, Missouri Nurses Association, Transcultural Nursing Society, Nurses Christian Fellowship, and Sigma Theta Tau.

Dr. Karla Larson believes in prayerful and intentional growth of our programs and awareness, for Bushnell University to meet the needs of our communities, both large and small, as a passion and calling for all of us.  Meeting both individual student needs and program goals is essential for excellent education, enabling students to feel supported in their educational journey and fully prepared for service where God calls them.  She is committed to remaining a reflective educator and helping other educators grow and learn. Karla believes it is critical to partner with clinical practice partners and employers to intentionally bridge the academics-to-practice gap.  This will produce well-prepared alumni to meet the needs of our communities.

Karla grew up in Eugene and graduated from Cottage Grove High School.  The Willamette Valley has always been where her heart lies.  Returning to Oregon and serving at Bushnell University, fills her heart with gratitude.  She is married to Dave who works in engineering, and has 3 adult, married children (whose families are all either current military or veterans) and 3 amazing grandchildren.