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Karen Alexander

Karen Alexander, PhD, RN, CNOR

Director of Nursing and Associate Professor,
College of Human Sciences and Humanities

Contact number: 281-212-1627
Office: HSB 226


Dr. Alexander, a native New Yorker, has been a proactive, experienced Registered Nurse for over 35 years. She earned her undergraduate associate and bachelor’s degrees in nursing from the City University of New York-Queensborough Community College and Excelsior College, New York, respectively. She earned her Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) in nursing from The University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston (UTMB) Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences, where she was an inaugural graduate from the BSN-PhD Nursing program.

She retired from the United States Air Force having served for 22 years, both as a Non-Commissioned and Commissioned Officer with several deployments, including Desert Shield and Desert Storm.

Dr. Alexander has worked in many facets of nursing. Currently, she is the program director and an associate professor for nursing at University of Houston Clear-Lake at Pearland. She strives to design and develop innovative strategies that promote high-quality education in a student-centered, active learning environment. She also serves to raise the bar in nursing excellence.

Before her role in higher education, she worked in the clinical arena as a medical-surgical staff nurse, perioperative staff nurse, and perioperative educator. She also worked in nursing management and administration.

Dr. Alexander is active in research and scholarly activities. Her research focus is on vulnerable populations (fathers of preterm infants, veterans, adolescent food insecurity). She has authored various peer-reviewed articles, been awarded research grants, and developed healthcare curriculum for the military, higher education nursing programs, and nursing education resources. She serves on various committees and boards internally and externally.

Dr. Alexander dedicates time to serve her professional and personal community as an active member of her church and various organizations, a role model, and a mentor.


2021 Alexander, K. E. (January 27, 2021). Relaunching Nurses To The Forefront In The COVID-19 
Pandemic: Heeding to The Call, Journal of Continuing Education in Nursing. 2021;52(2):67-71.

2021 Alexander, K.E. , Moore, R., Anderson, J., Kouba, W., LaGrone, W. (2021, Apr). Caring for the Health of Our Heroes: A Brief Overview of Common Mental Health Impairments, Treatment Modalities, and Veteran Administration Resources. Temple, C. N. (Ed.)  Muhammad Ali in Africana Cultural Memory. 250 pages. London-New York-Melbourne-Delhi, Anthem Press. (in press).  (April 2021) Caring for the Health of Our Heroes: A Brief Overview of Common Mental Health Impairments, Treatment Modalities, and Veteran Administration Resources. Muhammad Ali in Africana Cultural Memory; Anthem Africana Studies. Anthem Press. ISBN:9781785277191.

2020 Alexander, K. E., Lihono, M. A., & Penn, E. B. (2020). Examining Frequencies of Food 
Insecurity and Risky Behaviors in At-Risk Adolescents: Community Health Nurses Call to Action. Journal of Cultural Diversity, 27(3), 74–81.

2019 Alexander, K. [Extended Abstract] Association of Eating Behaviors and Food Insecurity in 
 Academically At-Risk Houston Adolescents: Nurses Call to Action. Proceedings of the 32nd   
 Association of Black Nursing Faculty, INC. News Letter – Summer;(13)2. 

2018 Khanade, K., Sasangohar, F. Sutherland, C.S., Alexander, K. (Jan-Mar, 2018) Deriving 
Information Requirements for a Smart Nursing System for Intensive Care units. Journal of Critical Care Nursing Quarterly, (41)1, 29–37 DOI: 10.1097/CNQ.0000000000000183. 

2017 Khanade, K, Sasangohar, F., Sadeghi1 M., Sutherland, S., Alexander, K. [Extended Abstract] Deriving Information Requirements for a Smart Nursing System for Intensive Care Units.  Proceedings of the Human Factors and Ergonomics Society 2017 Annual Meeting, Sage: Journals(6)1, 653-654. DOI 10.1177/1541931213601649

Courses (Current Academic Year)

  • NURS 4313-Nursing Research and Evidence-Based Practice
  • NURS 3311- History and Theories in Nursing

Research Projects

  • University of Houston Clear Lake-Early Entry into Clinical Practice: An Exploratory Evaluation Study of Nursing Student Performance During the COVID-19 Pandemic  Alexander, K. (PI), Woldu, D. (Co-PI) (Grant 2020).
  • National Science Foundation (NSF)- RAPID: A CURE for COVID-19: Course-based Research Experience on the Interaction between the Nasal Microbiome and Coronavirus Carriage, grant award ($50,000.00). LaMontagne, M (PI), Alexander, K. (Co-PI) (Grant 2020).

Awards and Accomplishments

  • Excellence in Leadership Award-Black Leadership Network 
  • Distinguished Alumni-UTMB Graduate School of Biosciences
  • Distinguished Faculty Award    
  • Sigma Theta Tau International Honor Society of Nursing
  • McGovern Distinguished Professorship Award 
  • Graduate Assistance in Areas of National Need (GAANN) Grant Award recipient   
  • Johnson & Johnson Promise for Nursing Scholarship Award recipient   
  • Good Samaritan Scholarship Award recipient                       
  • Numerous U.S. Air Force military medals and awards of decoration