In the News

Keffer Lab 2

Couple champions nursing at Manchester with labs, scholarships 

Manchester University’s young nursing program has champions in Dr. Harry Keffer and Dr. Jan Keffer.  
The Keffers, who live in Fishers, were on the North Manchester campus this fall to help dedicate the Keffer Nursing Lab. 

Retired health care professionals, the Keffers also provided MU’s nursing lab in Fort Wayne and scholarships to Manchester’s first nursing students.

This is the first year for two nursing degree tracks at Manchester:

  • Traditional students pursuing a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) degree will study the first two years in North Manchester and the second two years in Fort Wayne. 
  • MU’s 16-month Accelerated BSN Second Degree Program is for students with a bachelor’s degree in another field who would like to become a registered nurse. Full time and in person, the program has classrooms and a nursing lab in the Parkview Mirro Center for Research and Innovation in Fort Wayne. The Mirro Center is on the campus of Parkview North hospital, which is next door to Manchester’s Fort Wayne campus.

    “We are grateful to Harry and Jan for many things,” said President Dave McFadden at the dedication. “We are appreciative of your commitment, which is our commitment, to graduating students who will improve the human condition, who will help people be healthy and whole.”

    Lea Johnson, MU vice president for health science initiatives and dean of health professions, said the Keffers shared her vision for nursing education from the start. 

    “You have opened your hearts to our program. I know you really want to help our students and you want Manchester’s nursing program to be a success. And I promise you, it will be,” Johnson told the Keffers. “A new chapter of your health care legacy is just beginning and will continue at Manchester for many years to come.”

    Keffer Lab 1Harry Keffer graduated from Manchester in 1959. After earning a medical degree from Northwestern University School of Medicine, he served in a medical group of the U.S. Air Force. During more than 30 years with Terre Haute’s Union Hospital, he was chief of staff, chief of anesthesiology and chief of surgery. He also taught at Indiana University (IU) School of Medicine in Terre Haute. 

    Jan Keffer earned a bachelor’s degree from Indiana State University (ISU), a master’s degree from IU and a Ph.D. in nursing from the University of Illinois at Chicago. Throughout her clinical career as a primary health care adult nurse practitioner, she developed numerous nursing and nursing ethics courses. She taught at ISU, IU School of Medicine and IU in Indianapolis, including at the IU Center for Bioethics.

    “It is our privilege to help support Manchester and this program and to move it forward,” Jan Keffer said at the dedication. “We believe strongly in paying forward.”

    The nursing programs build on Manchester’s traditional strengths in health sciences. In addition to undergraduate programs, it offers a Doctor of Pharmacy, Master of Athletic Training and Master of Science in Pharmacogenomics. It is developing graduate programs in nutrition sciences, physical therapy and occupational therapy. An undergraduate nutrition sciences major begins in fall 2022.
    “As a regional university, our focus is on understanding the needs of our neighbors and serving those needs through the programs that we offer,” McFadden said. “With nursing, specifically, we aim to be patient-centered and understand health to be holistic rather than a set of clinical disciplines. That’s all in the spirit of Manchester University.” 

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Manchester University respects the infinite worth of every individual and graduates persons of ability and conviction who draw upon their education and faith to lead principled, productive, and compassionate lives that improve the human condition.

Manchester University, with campuses in North Manchester and Fort Wayne, Ind., provides vibrant and transformative student experiences. Learn more at

November 2021