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Elizabeth Poster, RN, PhD, FAAN - Dean of Nursing 1995-2013

Dr. Elizabeth Poster
Elizabeth Poster
Former Dean of Nursing

In 1995, Elizabeth C. Poster became the Dean of the UT Arlington School of Nursing. She was the second person to hold the position of dean, following Myrna Pickard who was the inaugural dean and name sake of Pickard Hall, home of the nursing program.

The UTA School of Nursing had an enrollment of 724 students across all programs in 1995. Today, the UT Arlington College of Nursing (CON) has an enrollment of over 8000 -- making it  the largest public nursing program in the USA.

Lauded for innovation and service to the nursing profession, Dr. Poster has been honored  as the recipient of several awards: the Health Care Industry Council of the North Texas Region named her one of the Top 12 Women in Healthcare; Online Schools Texas named her one of the Top 25 Nursing Professors in Texas; Legacy of Women awarded her with their Education Award; the International Society of Psychiatric Nurses - Child and Adolescent Division selected her to receive a leadership award; in 2001, she was named a Healthcare Hero by the Fort Worth Business Press;  she was honored by Boston College as a distinguished alumni; and was selected as one of the "Most Influential Women in Education" by the Fort Worth Business Press.

The Elizabeth Poster Professorship in Nursing is one way you can pay tribute to Dean Poster's legacy. GiveNow

UTA  highlights:

During her tenure as Dean, the School of Nursing became a College and the following are highlights of the changes since 1995:

  • Establishment of the Smart Hospital™
  • Establishment of the PhD and DNP doctoral programs
  • Establishment of a Masters in Nursing Education Program
  • Expansion of the Master’s Program with a 97-100% pass rate for the national NP certification exams on the first attempt
  • Media enriched online programs for undergraduate and graduate programs including currently planned MOOC2D course
  • Contracts with over 35 Community Colleges to offer our Professional Pathways program to their students – resulting in a seamless transition from an ADN program to our AP RN-BSN program
  • Initiated relationship with Academic Partnerships to offer online degree programs: RN-to-BSN, BSN, MSN Nursing Administration, and MSN Nursing Education.
  • International certificate public health program in South America
  • Established the Dream Makers Scholarship program that has raised $2.2 million for student scholarships
  • Establishment of 55 endowments
  • Establishment of the College’s first chair, the Moritz Chair for Geriatric Nursing Research

Service to the nursing profession:


  • Served as the elected President of the American Psychiatric Nurses Association
  • Editor of the Journal of Child and Adolescent Psychiatric Nursing for 20 years
  • FAAN Fellow American Academy of Nursing: The American Academy of Nursing has approximately 2,068 Fellows within the ranks of the 3 Million RNs in the USA. Invitation to Fellowship is more than recognition of one’s accomplishments within the nursing profession. Academy Fellows also have a responsibility to contribute their time and energies to the Academy, and to engage with other health care leaders outside the Academy in transforming America’s health care system.


  • Appointed by the Governor to serve on the Texas Board of Nursing for 6 years.
  • Invited to Chair the BON Competency committee to update the DEC (Differentiated Essential Competency guidelines) twice since 2002.
  • Founded the North Texas Consortium of Professional Nursing Programs and chaired the group of 16 Deans/Directors until 2011.
  • Elected for a 2 year term as the President of the Texas Association of Deans and Directors of Professional Nursing Programs (representing the 108 programs in Texas).


Served on a number of boards of directors for Community Health Care organizations such as Healthy Tarrant County Collaboration, DFWHC Education Foundation and THR Professional Practice and Safety Committee.