Faculty Profiles

Rick Becker

Rick Becker

Assistant Professor
Nursing Science
1017 Regina Hall


“Refuse God nothing."

–Jeanne Jugan

My entire professional career has revolved around education, either directly or indirectly. As a religious educator, I was committed to faithfully passing along church teaching and forming others in faith, both young and old, in a way that was stimulating and relevant. As an oncology and hospice nurse, I did my best to tailor patient education—and the education of patient family members—to particular needs, circumstances, and learning capacities.

Once I decided to enter the field of nursing education, I determined that, in addition to drawing on my previous teaching experience, I would strive to be the instructor I always wanted or looked forward to when I myself was a nursing student. Nursing school is like landing in an exotic foreign land with no knowledge of the culture, the mores, or even the language. At least it was like that for me. The instructors who had the greatest impact on my success in nursing school were not always the most knowledgeable or experienced, but rather the ones who took a personal interest in who I was—my hopes, my struggles, my way of navigating the world—because they truly accompanied me as I progressed in my nursing formation.

That’s the kind of nursing instructor I aspire to be all the time, although it’s perhaps something ultimately unattainable in any complete sense. Nonetheless, it’s an ideal that I have held up as a goal throughout my years in nursing education, and one which I’d like to think I’ve gotten ever closer to approximating in my teaching.


DNP, Indiana Wesleyan University
MS, Ball State University
MA, Franciscan University of Steubenville
BSN, Bethel University
BA, Seattle Pacific University

Areas of Expertise 

  • Healthcare Ethics
  • Bioethics

Research Interests 

Moral distress and moral resilience

Courses Recently Taught 

NURS330 Adult Medical-Surgical Nursing: Chronic 

Professional Experience 

  • Bethel University, Mishawaka, Ind: Assistant professor of nursing (2004-2022)
  • Elkhart General Hospital, Elkhart, Ind: Oncology staff nurse (2000-2008)
  • Center for Hospice and Palliative Care, South Bend, Ind (2002-2004)

Creative and Scholarly Work 

Becker, R. (2011, Winter). Hypodermoclysis and proctoclysis as basic care: avoiding unnecessary terminal dehydration. National Catholic Bioethics Quarterly, 649-659.
Becker, R. (2016). Ecumenism, conversion, and the Catholic Worker: Dorothy Day's appeal to evangelicals (pp. 263-272), in Dorothy Day and the Church: Past, Present, & Future, eds. Lance Richey and Adam DeVille, Solidarity Hall Press.
Becker, R. (2024). The impact of moral distress on staff and novice nursesJournal of Christian Nursing, 41(1), 50-56. 

Professional Memberships 

National Catholic Certification in Health Care Ethics, Certificate of Completion with Distinction, National Catholic Bioethics Center, Philadelphia, PA (2010-2011)