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Associate Provost Brenda Nichols named distinguished member of Phi Kappa Phi

Brenda NicholsLamar University Associate Provost Brenda Nichols has recently been honored as a distinguished member of the honor society Phi Kappa Phi. The award was presented to Nichols by LU’s chapter of Phi Kappa Phi.

Nichols has been a member of Phi Kappa Phi for 25 years, and has served the organization in several capacities including president-elect and president.

“Dr. Nichols has a clear passion for promoting scholarship and the love of learning through our community,” said chapter president Teresa Simpson. During Fall 2018, Nichols demonstrated that by launching Harvey’s Heroes, a program where hundreds of LU students helped the community recover from flooding through service projects.

“In return for their civic leadership, she was able to secure funding to grant 3 credit hours for those students who submitted 45 hours of civic leadership within an eight week period,” Simpson said. “Harvey’s Heroes became a staple in our community, recognized by our University System and the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board.” To receive credit, students also read scholarly articles on servant leadership and civic engagement and attended an orientation and final debrief.

In a nomination letter, LU Provost James Marquart noted Nichols’ leadership “in moving ‘Harvey’s Heroes’ from an idea to a major success for this institution that was nothing short of unbelievable.”

“Harvey’s Heroes has been a tremendous gift to our community,” Marquart said.

Brenda NicholsThe award is given to members who have served Phi Kappa Phi or society in general or both, in an outstanding manner. In order to receive this honor, candidates are nominated by chapter or board members through a letter of nomination and thorough documentation (resume, vitae, etc.) and approved by the board of directors.

Nichols earned associate and bachelor’s degrees in nursing and a master’s degree in education from the University of Evansville. She completed her doctoral degree at Indiana University. Her areas of expertise include nursing administration, research and international health care. She has published in a number of journals that center upon patient care and nursing administration.

Nichols joined Lamar University as dean of the College of Arts and Sciences and professor of nursing in 2001, a role she filled until October 2015 when she was named associate provost. While serving as dean, Nichols guided the work of more than 200 full-time faculty in 12 academic departments, interdisciplinary majors, AFROTC, dual credit programs, study abroad and partnership programs at the undergraduate and Master’s level.