Upon the occasion of the retirement of Helen Jacobsen Lee from the faculty of Montana State University, the Board of Regents wishes to express its appreciation for her service to the University, the Montana University System, and the people of the State of Montana.
Helen Jacobsen Lee has had a long and distinguished career as a MSU-Bozeman College of Nursing faculty member, faculty/student mentor, and scholar. She earned a Bachelor's (1957) and a Master's (1960) degree from MSU-Bozeman and a Ph.D. (1986) from The University of Texas at Austin. In 1992, she completed a post-doctoral fellowship in care of aging persons at Oregon Health & Sciences University in Portland. She began her appointment as Assistant Professor at MSU-Bozeman College of Nursing in 1976, was awarded tenure in 1980, and was promoted to Associate Professor in 1991.
Throughout her 28 years with MSU-Bozeman, she has made significant contributions to the College of Nursing in the areas of teaching, research/creative activities, and service. She taught countless undergraduate and graduate courses in her areas of specialty and is well known for her excellence in teaching, particularly in the graduate program. The graduate students who have been expertly mentored by Dr. Lee in their theses work are too numerous to count. Dr. Lee has also been very effective and generous with her time in serving as mentor to faculty members who were less experienced in their teaching, research, and service roles. In terms of service, Dr. Lee has served as chair or member of nearly all College of Nursing committees over her career. She also effectively served as Missoula Campus Director from 1997 to 2001.
In the area of research and scholarship, in particular, Dr. Lee's contributions have created a legacy that will undoubtedly benefit the University, College, faculty, and students into the foreseeable future. Dr. Lee has been and is very instrumental in the rural nursing theory development work, for which the College of Nursing is well known, nationally and internationally. She is currently co-investigator on two research projects, has one manuscript in press, and another manuscript in review. She was also the lead author and moderator of a symposium on rural nursing theory presented at the Western Institute of Nursing research conference in April 2004.
Dr. Lee served as editor of Conceptual Basis for Rural Nursing which was published in 1998. This monograph contained original manuscripts as well as a compilation of twenty years of rural theory development work. Dr. Lee established an endowment from the royalties received from the sale of the monograph which funds annual grants for investigators conducting rural nursing research projects.
For these and other contributions, The Board of Regents of Higher Education is pleased to confer on Helen Jacobsen Lee the rank of Professor Emeritus of Nursing at Montana State University, and wishes her well for many years in the future.