Dawn Oxley Headshot


Dawn Oxley

Adjunct Faculty


  • MSHCA California College for Health Sciences
  • BSN Mount Mercy University
  • BS Mount Mercy University


Since November 2017, Dawn Oxley has worked as an adjunct faculty member for the health care administration at Mount Mercy University.

As a native Iowan, Oxley was born and raised in the Iowa City/Coralville region. She went on to Mount Mercy and graduated in May of 1881 with a BS in Nursing and Biology. Immediately after graduation, Oxley was employed at the Iowa City Veterans Affairs Health Care System (ICVAHCS), ultimately, working there for 36 years until her retirement in September of 2017.

Initially, Oxley started her position at ICVAHCS as a staff nurse in a 36-bed Neurology/Neurosurgery unit. After a year, the Clinical Manager, or Head Nurse, position became available, and she earned the opportunity to be selected. Oxley worked as the Head Nurse at the ICVAHCS for four years until she was selected to be an off-tour nursing supervisor.

She held this supervisor position for six years, where she was responsible for all areas of the hospital during the off-tours as well as providing coverage for the emergency room screening, admitting patients and assisting to any area that needed help.

After this position, Oxley returned as a day-shift nursing manager for outpatients. She supervised specialty clinics, specialty procedure areas, and managers in Primary Care. In 2004, Oxley received her MS in Health Care Administration from California College for Health Science. From then on, she took on progressively more complex positions at ICVAHCS.

In 2005, Oxley was selected as the Associate Director of Patient Care Services/Nurse Executive, which she upheld until her retirement in 2017. During her time in this position, she was responsible for approximately 1000 full-time employees. As a Nurse Executive for the Veteran Integrated Service Network (VISN) 23 Mental Health Service Line, she functioned as a consultant for nursing in mental health for VISN 23’s eight health care systems.

In 2012 and 2014, Oxley spent a period of 9 and 7 months as the acting Director for the ICVAHCS when the position was vacant. After retiring in September 2017, she went on to her second career: teaching the Health Care Administration program at Mount Mercy University.

In her field, her area of interest is predominantly about all things nursing and health care administration. At MMU she teaches Organization of Health Care Services (HS 200), Quality Patient/Resident Care (HS 201), Health Literacy (HS 220), Health Care Informatics (Graduate [HS 615] and Undergraduate [HS 415]), and Health Care Law, Regulation and Compliance Graduate (HS 520).