Considering a career in nursing? The Department of Nursing offers the bachelor of science in nursing (BSN) degree. We hope these Web pages offer you a glimpse of the exciting opportunities available to you as a student.
Our BSN program offers two tracks that provide educational opportunities for individuals who are seeking a career in nursing or are registered nurses endeavoring to increase their knowledge, expertise, and earning capabilities. The tracks in the BSN program prepare practitioners that are capable of decision making in the care of individuals, families, groups and communities. Our BSN graduates are prepared and successfully obtain employment in settings such as acute care facilities, community and public health, and leadership roles in health care.
Our Departmental Mission, which supports the University Mission, is to provide excellence in education through integration of liberal arts learning and professional education that prepare professional nurses to provide quality nursing care to individuals, families, groups and communities with diverse health needs. Students get hands-on experience in a top-rated health care community facilitated by outstanding nursing faculties, which facilitate achievement of graduate competencies. Students are provided opportunity to develop skills as leaders who will be successful in transforming the health and well-being of our communities.
Leadership and governance opportunities for students are available for those who wish to serve as representatives to the university or in the Nursing Student Organization (NSO).
We welcome you to our University and invite you to explore this site to open the possibilities that are before you at Rockford University.
Department Chair of Nursing and Assistant Professor
B.A., Lewis University
M.B.A., Northwestern University, Kellogg Graduate School of Management
M.S., University of Illinois at Chicago
D.N.P., University of Illinois at Chicago
Phone: 815-226-4054 
‌ LMonahan@rockford.edu

Dr. Laura Monahan has a DNP degree in Executive Nursing Leadership and an MS degree in Nursing Administration from the University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC).  Additionally, she has an MBA degree from Northwestern University/Kellogg Graduate School of Management in Marketing and Organizational Behavior, and a BA in Liberal Arts and Business from Lewis University.  Dr. Monahan is a member of the Sigma Theta Tau International Honor Society, the Delta Epsilon Sigma Honor Society, and the Illinois Organization of Nurse Leaders. 

While a student at UIC, she was chosen as the first DNP recipient to receive the prestigious two-year Jonas Healthcare Scholarship, and in January of 2016 presented a toolkit on nurse mentoring at the Jonas Scholars Conference in Washington, DC.  She also received the four-year Children of Veterans Scholarship while at UIC.  Her DNP project focused on interprofessional education (IPE) initiatives, and she developed an IPE program for medical and pharmacy students to job-shadow with nurse practitioners (NPs) in order to enhance communication and collaboration skills among health care providers.  The results of this project are pending publication. Dr. Monahan has presented at various conferences on IPE and mentorship.  She is presently working on three additional research projects.  One project involves developing interprofessional educational experiences for internal medicine, family medicine and rehabilitation medical residents working with wound/ostomy/continence nurses at Mount Sinai Hospital in Chicago, IL.  Another project involves nurse practitioner and pharmacy students developing knowledge in the interprofessional domains of interprofessional communication, roles and responsibilities, and teams and teamwork while in immersion experiences in Haiti.  A third project involves interprofessional education program developments for medical, pharmacy, undergraduate nursing and graduate nursing students.

Dr. Monahan has previously created coursework and taught master’s level nursing administration students at Elmhurst College, and master’s and doctorate level nurse practitioner students at UIC.  Her nursing experiences include working as a staff nurse, nurse educator, adjunct faculty, project manager, and nursing faculty.  Prior to becoming a nurse, she has had extensive experience as an executive at Commonwealth Edison structuring utility power contracts between various utilities in the U.S. and Canada.  

Nola Addante, MSN, RN
Assistant Professor of Nursing
B.S., Northern Illinois University
M.S., University of Phoenix

E-mail: NAddante@rockford.edu

Professor Nola Addante has been in the faculty role at Rockford University since 2010. She currently teaches Community Health Nursing. She has also taught adult health, adult health clinical, pathopharmacology, nutrition, and has co-taught leadership and management in nursing, senior seminar, and the NCLEX prep course.

In the fall of 2014, Professor Addante achieved the distinction of a Certified Nurse Educator from the National League of Nursing. Some of the other roles that Professor Addante has had at Rockford University are first-year advisor, forum administrator, and the NSO (Nursing Student Advisor).

Professor Addante graduated from NIU in 1997 with a B.S. in Nursing. Her nursing career includes such experiences as the operating room, home health, outpatient surgery, and oncology. She received a Master's Degree in Nursing Education from the University of Phoenix in 2010. In addition, Professor Addante is currently pursuing a Doctorate of Leadership in Higher Education at Cardinal Stritch University in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.

She is a member of Sigma Theta Tau International (nursing honor society) and the American Nurse's Association.

Andrea Anderson, MSN, RN
Assistant Professor of Nursing
B.S.N., University of Illinois at Chicago
M.S.N., University of Illinois at Chicago

Phone: 815-226-4139
Fax: 815-394-5166
E-mail: AAnderson@rockford.edu

Assistant Professor Andrea Anderson joined Rockford University in the fall of 2007. She received her bachelor’s degree in nursing from the University of Illinois at Chicago in 1996. She completed her master’s degree at the University of Illinois at Chicago’s Rockford campus in 2001 with a concentration in psychiatric nursing. 
Professor Anderson's master’s project was a Concept Analysis of Childhood Aggression. She has worked in the area of psychiatric nursing since 1996. Her experience varies greatly from outpatient mental health services with children and adults, acute inpatient mental health units specializing in children and adults, group homes in community settings, and addiction rehabilitation and detoxification facilities. 
Denise Boxleitner, MSN, RN
Assistant Professor of Nursing
B.S.N. University of St. Francis
M.S.N, St. Anthony College of Nursing

Phone: 815-226-4126
E-mail: Dboxleitner@rockford.edu

Professor Denise Boxleitner joined Rockford University in 2011 as Assistant Professor of Nursing. Her registered nurse career began in 1981 after graduating from Rock Valley College. Many years of nursing experience were gained as a staff nurse among diverse patient populations in ICU, ER, OB, Labor & Delivery, Home Health and Oncology. 
Returning to school for a Bachelors Degree in Health Arts in 1995 from the University of St. Francis and again in 2011 to complete a Masters Degree in Nursing Education from Saint Anthony College of Nursing brought Professor Boxleitner to her position at Rockford University - teaching the Fundamentals of Contemporary Nursing Practice. She has maintained her certification as an OCN (Oncology Certified Nurse) and is an active member of the local Oncology Nursing Society Chapter.
An active member of the Phi Omicron Chapter of Sigma Theta Tau International Nursing Honor Society, Professor Boxleitner is a member of the Governance Committee. She actively participates in local community service projects and encourages student involvement. Together they have provided volunteer service for The Rock River Valley Pantry, The American Red Cross, and Keep Northern Illinois Beautiful.‌ 
Jacqueline Garland, MSN, RN‌
Assistant Professor of Nursing
A.S., Sauk Valley Community College
B.S.N., Northern Illinois University
M.S.N., Lewis University, Romeoville
Phone: 815-226-4086
E-mail: JGarland@rockford.edu

Professor Garland’s education has expanded throughout the years since first starting in nursing as a Licensed Practical Nurse. She received her BSN from Northern Illinois University and MSN from Lewis University. Currently, she is attending Northern Illinois University seeking her EdD. Her personal belief is that learning is a lifetime process. Everything a person learns will impact the person we become. She believes we learn daily through personal beliefs systems, morals, worldview, and ethics. She strives to enhance her skills as a nursing educator. 
As a registered nurse, she has had numerous years of nursing experience in the emergency room, telemetry, psychiatric unit, intensive care unit, cardiac, orthopedics, geriatric, medical-surgical and correctional nursing. To date, she works PRN on a medical-surgical unit with occasional transfer to telemetry.

Professor Garland became interested in nursing education while working in a community college in the nursing lab, pursuing her MSN. She has experience as a clinical instructor on pediatric and medical-surgical units. As a nursing educator, she has had great enjoyment working with nursing students in nursing fundamentals, health assessment, geriatrics, adult health, leadership and nursing issues. As a licensed Illinois massage therapist, she was a guest speaker at a community hospital to the diabetic population on benefits of massage therapy and has been a guest speaker, for the physical therapy department at a community college regarding working relationships between nursing and physical therapists. She was also a guest speaker on a panel discussion for the Student Nurses Association of Illinois 65th Annual Convention. As an instructor for the American Red Cross, she has been a volunteer in Parish Nursing and participates every summer delivering Meals on Wheels. 

Kim A. Hartwig, MSN, RNC-MNN
Assistant Professor of Nursing
B.S.N., Olivet Nazarene University

M.S.N., Olivet Nazarene University

Phone: 815-226-4016
E-mail: Khartwig@rockford.edu

Professor Kimberley Hartwig joined the Rockford University faculty in August 2014. After working in the accounting field and while raising her young children, she graduated with her degree from Rock Valley College in 2001 and began her nursing career.  Professor Hartwig always has had a passion for teaching and went back to school and completed her BSN from Olivet Nazarene University in 2007 and her Masters of Science in Nursing Education in 2011.

Professor Hartwig spent her nursing career in the Women’s and Children’s arena and is a Certified Registered Nurse in the field of Maternal-Newborn Nursing.  She is a member of AWHONN (Association of Women’s Health, Obstetrics and Neonatal Nurses) and also Sigma Theta Tau International, the Honor Society of Nursing, and the Stateline Nurses Network.

Professor Hartwig is the faculty advisor for RU’s Nursing Student Organization (NSO), a member of the Forum Committee and co-chair of the department’s Curriculum and Assessment Committee. 
Adjunct Professor of Nursing

Helen Lawhorn, MSN, RN

Assistant Professor of Nursing
B.S.N., Olivet Nazarene University
M.S.N., Olivet Nazarene University

Phone: 815-226-4130

Assistant Professor Helen Lawhorn joined Rockford University in the fall of 2015. She graduated from Kishwaukee Community College with her Associate Degree in Nursing in 1990.  She received her Bachelor of Science Degree in Nursing from the Olivet Nazarene University in 2010. She completed her Master of Sciences Nursing Administration at Olivet Nazarene University in 2011.

Professor Lawhorn has a strong background in bedside nursing and nursing administration. She has worked in several areas of nursing: Medical–Surgical, Intensive Care, Obstetrics, Emergency Department and Nursing Administration.  She holds certifications in Trauma and Advances Life Support as well as several certifications in Pediatrics and Nursing Administration.

Professor Lawhorn has a passion for medicine and nursing.  She incorporates her philosophy of servant leadership into the classroom.   


Courtney Lewis, MSN, RN
Assistant Professor of Nursing
A.S., Rock Valley College
B.S.N, Olivet Nazarene University
M.S.N., Ovivet Nazarene University
Phone: 815-226-4111
E-mail: CoLewis@rockford.edu

Assistant Professor Courtney Lewis received her Associate’s Degree in Nursing from Rock Valley College in 2009 and began working in orthopedics.  She obtained her Bachelor of Science in Nursing Degree through Olivet Nazarene University in 2012 and changed her nursing focus to emergency medicine.  In 2015 she received her Master’s Degree in Nursing Education, also from Olivet Nazarene University.  She was able to complete her practicum with Rockford University in the spring of 2015 and became an Adjunct Clinical Professor in fall of 2015, for Family Health Nursing and Adult Health Nursing.

Coming from a family of educators, Professor Lewis has not only found her passion in nursing, she is passionate about education as well.  She first encountered nursing education while working on the orthopedic unit teaching perioperative classes to patients undergoing total joint surgeries. She has also played a pivotal role in mentoring and precepting new nurses and nursing students to the orthopedic unit and to the emergency department.  She continues to stay active working in the emergency department on a PRN basis.


Mychalena Magoon

Adjunct Professor of Nursing



Kimberly McCullough, MSN, RN
Assistant Professor of Nursing
B.S.N. Rockford University
M.S.N. St. Anthony College of Nursing

Phone: 815-226-4059
Fax: 815-394-5166
E-mail: kmccullough@rockford.edu

Assistant Professor Kim McCullough joined Rockford University in the spring of 2013 as an adjunct clinical instructor. She accepted a full-time tenure faculty position in the fall of 2013. She received her bachelor’s degree in nursing form Rockford College® in 2007. Professor McCullough completed her master’s degree at St. Anthony College of Nursing in 2013 with a concentration in nursing education. Her master’s project was a literature review on "Educating Nurse’s on End-of-life Care”.

Professor McCullough has worked in the areas of orthopedics, medical surgical and home care. She is a member of Sigma Theta Tau. 
Rockford University Department of Nursing is approved by the State of Illinois Department of Professional Regulation (IDFPR) www.idfpr.com and is accredited by the Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing, Inc. (ACEN), 3343 Peachtree Road NE, Suite 850; Atlanta, Georgia 30326; phone (404) 975 5000; fax (404) 975-5020; www.acenursing.org.