Karen Allen

Karen Allen, Dean of College of Nursing and Health Professionals

Karen Allen Ph.D., RN, FAAN
Dean and Professor, College of Nursing and Health Professions


Karen Allen joined Valparaiso University’s faculty in July 2017. Dean Allen is responsible for the strategic leadership, coordination, and guidance of the College of Nursing and Health Professions and has an accomplished record as an expert in substance abuse and addictions treatment. Dean Allen served as chair of the nursing department at Andrews University in Berrien, Michigan, for 17 years. Under her leadership, the department established a doctor of nursing practice program with an emphasis in family nurse practitioner, which recently received accreditation from ACEN. She served on a variety of committees at Andrews, including the Graduate Committee, the Program Development and Review Committee, the University Strategic Planning Committee, and the Diversity Committee.

Dean Allen has served in various leadership roles, including president of the International Nurses Society on Addiction for four years; member of the board of directors of Adventist Health Systems Sunbelt Corporation for five years; member of the United States Center for Substance Abuse Treatment, Treatment Improvement Protocols Editorial Advisory Board for five years; member of the National Advisory Council for the United States Center for Substance Abuse Prevention for seven years. Currently she is a member of The American Academy of Nursing, The American Nurses Association, The International Nurses Society on Addictions, Phi Kappa Phi Interdisciplinary Honors Society, and Sigma Theta Tau International Honor Society of Nursing (Alpha Lambda Chapter).

Dean Allen has been an avid researcher throughout her career. She is widely published and has authored numerous refereed and non-refereed journal articles, along with books and book chapters. A frequent consultant, Dean Allen has provided curriculum expertise for addictions in many venues. She is the recipient of numerous awards throughout her career, including the Andrews University Siegfried H. Horn Excellence in Research and Creative Scholarship Lifetime Achievement Award, the U.S. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Center for Substance Abuse Treatment Innovator Award for Women’s Substance Abuse Treatment, and the Michigan Nurses Association Carol E. Franck Nursing Leadership Award.

  • Ph.D., University of Illinois at Chicago
  • M.S., Andrews University
  • BSN, Andrews University
  • Fellow, American Academy of Nursing