Clarkson College

Not to be confused with Clarkson University, in Potsdam, New York.
Clarkson College
Type private non-profit
Established 1888
President Dr. Tony Damewood
Students 1,250
Location Omaha, Nebraska, USA
Campus Urban and Online
Affiliations Nebraska Medicine, The Episcopal Church, accredited by The Higher Learning Commission

Clarkson College is a private college located in Omaha, Nebraska that offers undergraduate, graduate and post-graduate degrees in the health sciences. Areas of study include nursing, medical imaging, imaging informatics, radiologic technology, health care business, health information management, physical therapist assistant, health care services, and professional development. [1] It is affiliated with the Episcopal Church and Nebraska Medicine. Total student enrollment was 1,250 in August 2016.


Clarkson College was founded in 1888 at the Bishop Clarkson Memorial Hospital in Omaha, Neb. as a two-year nursing program. In 1902, it was developed into a three-year nurses' training school. In 1936, Bishop Clarkson Memorial School of Nursing moved to new facilities at 26th and Dewey Streets, with students housed in several homes nearby. That move was followed by the building of a new dormitory across the street from the Bishop Clarkson Memorial Hospital. During that time, the school actively participated in the U.S. Cadet Nurse Corps program. The school closed in 1955 due to budget problems but a large donation enabled it to reopen in 1960.

The Bishop Clarkson Memorial Hospital School of Nursing reopened its doors to 50 students in a new building on Sept. 12, 1960. Mr. and Mrs. Peter Kiewit were the primary benefactors behind the construction of the new training school.

Clarkson College Nursing graduates were once again helping America in its outreach to the world. In 1966, 11 graduates traveled to Vietnam as part of an 11-month tour. In 1981, the Nebraska Coordinating Commission for Post-Secondary Education approved a petition that advanced Bishop Clarkson School of Nursing to a college of nursing offering a four-year Bachelor of Science in Nursing program.

Dr. Patricia Book Perry fostered a promising future for the Bishop Clarkson College when she was appointed the first president of the College in 1987.

National accreditation for the College was followed in the 1990s by a major expansion of academic offerings, including the introduction of online education and degree programs in the areas of Radiologic Technology, Physical Therapist Assistant and Health Care Business.

In 1992, Clarkson College moved to its current location at 42nd and Dodge Streets.

The implementation of a learning management system in 1998 put Clarkson College at the forefront of online education. In 2000, Clarkson College developed the Gateway to Success Minority Nursing Scholarship, facilitating greater opportunities for a more diverse student population—and creating the need for more upgrades to facilities.

In 2004, the College opened a two-story Student Center encompassed with a Bookstore, community hall, and student resources facility. Connected to the Student Center is an apartment-style, 140-bed Residence Hall. The Clarkson Service League Heritage Garden and courtyard inhabit the space between the student facilities and the main College building.

In 2007, Clarkson College welcomed Dr. Louis Burgher as its new President. For more than 20 years, Dr. Burgher was the medical director of pulmonary medicine and critical care at Clarkson Hospital and simultaneously dedicated a handful of years as the medical director at Blue Cross/Blue Shield of Nebraska. After retiring as a practicing pulmonologist, Dr. Burgher served as President and CEO of Clarkson Regional Health Services, Nebraska Health Systems (known today as Nebraska Medicine) and the Greater Omaha Chamber of Commerce.

In 2010, the College launched the first Nurse Anesthesia Master’s degree program in Nebraska.

A state-of-the-art simulation lab and control room were added to campus in 2011 to enhance hands-on learning opportunities for students.

In 2013, the College launched its first doctoral programs: a Doctor of Nursing Practice program and a Doctor in Health Care Education & Leadership program. With the transition of Dr. Louis Burgher to President Emeritus in fall 2016, Dr. Tony Damewood, former Dean of Enrollment and Vice President of Operations, assumed the presidency.


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Coordinates: 41°15′33″N 95°58′30″W / 41.25917°N 95.97500°W / 41.25917; -95.97500

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