Sketched Portrait of Constance Hendricks

Constance Smith Hendricks

Dr. Constance Smith Hendricks is known internationally as an exemplary nurse, scholar and leader. She earned her Bachelor of Science in Nursing and her Master of Science in Nursing from the University of Alabama at Birmingham and her PhD in Clinical Nursing Research from Boston College. Currently, Hendricks serves as the Dean of the School of Nursing and Allied Health at Tuskegee University.

Prior to returning to Tuskegee, Hendricks served as the Founding Dean of Nursing and Allied Health at Concordia College Alabama, Full Professor (Emerita) and the Charles W. Barkley Endowed Professor at Auburn University, Dean of the School of Nursing at Hampton University, Graduate Chair at Southern University and A & M College, and held faculty positions at The University of South Carolina, Tuskegee University and UAB. Dr. Hendricks is highly respected for her translational action-oriented health promoting research with rural and minority populations, health disparities, adolescence and gerontology.

Dr. Hendricks’ work spans heavily across the southeastern U.S. and globally in the countries of Liberia, Ghana, Ethiopia and Malawi. As a visiting presidential scholar, she developed the first doctoral program, Doctorate of Nursing Practice, at Kentucky State University, implemented the first PhD program in the state of Louisiana at Southern University Baton Rouge and developed the Health Sciences Division at Concordia College Alabama. She is also known for her grant skills and funding success. Dr. Hendricks has secured millions of dollars to increase and foster health promoting behaviors among all generations, especially persons from rural and underrepresented segments of the population.

Dr. Hendricks has numerous peer-reviewed articles and throughout her career, has broken glass ceilings for others to follow. Dr. Hendricks is the first African American to graduate from the PhD program in Nursing at Boston College and the first African American tenured with Full Professor rank at Auburn University. She has received numerous awards throughout her career such as the Lillian Holland Harvey award from Alabama State Nurses’ Association. She was inducted into the American Academy of Nursing (2009), into the Tuskegee University School of Nursing Hall of Fame (2016), into The Zeta Phi Beta Sorority Incorporated Regional Hall of Fame (2012) and Alabama Zeta Hall of Fame (2015). Dr. Hendricks has devoted more than 45 years to the nursing profession and continues to be a trailblazer in the nursing profession in the state of Alabama and beyond.

Dr. Hendricks extends a thank you to her daughter, Dr. Denisha Hendricks for sharing her mother with others; to her family, mentors, colleagues, UABSON & BC, organizational families, and supporters who provided guidance, words of encouragement, child care and “stepped in” just when she needed them- even when she was not aware of her need; and to her affiliations who have allowed her an opportunity to blend her passion for service with her scholarship to allow her to emerge and become who she is today, To God Be the Glory!