The Clarke Advantage

What makes our nurses stand out above the rest? Experience.


  • Nursing students have three years of hands-on clinical experience, totaling over 673 hours. During their junior year, students have the opportunity to work in specialized clinical settings, including operating rooms, emergency rooms, diabetic and dialysis centers, cardiac catheter labs, cardiac rehabilitation and oncology.
  • The Clarke Nursing Department has clinical agency contacts with about 200 health-care providers, offering a variety of educational possibilities.
  • Nursing students complete a clinical internship in their senior year to include a minimum of 120 hours in a one-on-one contract with a nurse.
  • Clarke students are in leadership positions with the Iowa State Board of Nursing and the National Student Nurse Association Board.
  • The Clarke Nursing Department has an active student nursing association with the Clarke Association of Nursing Students.


  • Students in the bachelor’s degree nursing program at Clarke are given access to the ATI prep test from their sophomore year and the result is high NCLEX pass rates for Clarke students
  • No more than 8 students are allowed in each clinical group, allowing for excellent one-on-one instruction.
  • Clarke faculty members Ann Weltin and Carmen Wycoff presented at two major national meetings on a new form of clinical evaluation – Objective Structured Clinical Examination. 

10-table Cadaver Lab cadaver lab
Clarke University is one of the few liberal arts institutions of our size in the country to have a 10-table cadaver lab. This medical school-quality gross anatomy lab gives Clarke students an opportunity to learn with the best resources. Having 10 cadavers in the lab increases the probability of finding interesting surgical procedures and observing anomalies, which enhance learning opportunities. What’s even more impressive is that this lab is used by undergraduate students as well as graduate students. This means you won’t just hear about the advantages of having this facility on campus, you will directly benefit from the experiences held in this remarkable lab.

Clarke nursing graduates work and lead across the nation. Here are just a few examples of where recent graduates have been hired.

  • University of Wisconsin Hospitals
  • University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics
  • Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn.
  • St. Luke’s Hospital in Cedar Rapids
  • Mercy Medical Center, Dubuque, Iowa 
  • Finley Hospital, Dubuque, Iowa
  • Covenant Medical Center, Waterloo, Iowa


Clarke nurses have a reputation of success. In fact, on average, 90 percent of employers rate Clarke University nursing students higher than graduates from other nursing schools.

Freeport Health Network actually named Clarke a “preferred school of nursing” from which to hire graduates. For every Clarke nursing student they hire, the health center gives a $2,500 scholarship to another current Clarke nursing student. The renowned Mayo Clinic recently also contacted Clarke to form a closer relationship with the University because the Mayo staff was so impressed with the caliber of Clarke nurses. This summer, three of our nursing students received competitive internships at Mayo.

But it’s about more than credentials. The words of professional nurses who have worked with Clarke nurses say it all.:

One said:

"...she seemed much calmer and relaxed during orientation than the other six nurses we hired at the same time. Also, she had much better critical-thinking skills, was able to handle a full assignment sooner and take care of more challenging patients than the other new nurses.”

Another said:

"Our only recommendation is that you send us more Clarke students to hire. They are the best-prepared students we have hired.”

Want to learn more about nursing at Clarke? Contact the admissions office at (800)383-2345 or

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