Tuesday, February 25, 2020
Lois Plummer Hartline

Lois Plummer Hartline (BSN ′55) had childhood dreams of being a flight attendant. Those dreams never materialized, in part, because of her school nurse—Alice Clark.

“Alice provided excellent care to me while I was at East High School in Des Moines,” said Lois. “Because of her, I decided that I wanted to be a nurse.”

Lois earned her BSN and secondary teaching certificate from the University of Iowa, and while on campus, she competed as the only woman on the UI’s club fencing team.

“The critical thinking skills I developed at Iowa helped me get my dream job,” said Lois, who worked as a school nurse for more than 40 years at four elementary schools in the Des Moines Public School System. During her career, Lois developed and implemented health screening schedules and established community partnerships to complete vision screenings for all students.

Upon her retirement in 2004, Lois received the Governor of the State of Iowa’s Certificate of Appreciation for outstanding service to Iowa’s children.

She owes much of her professional success to Pearl Zemlicka (MA ′58), who supported and mentored Lois during her time in the UI College of Nursing. Her mentor is also a reason why Lois gave back to the UI College of Nursing.

“When I found out that Pearl had established a scholarship through her estate, I started contributing to the fund because I wanted to carry on Pearl’s legacy,” said Lois. “I started to receive thank-you notes from the scholarship recipients, and I was touched by the dreams and visions of those students.”

That’s why Lois established her own scholarship in the UI College of Nursing. Lois kickstarted the scholarship through the charitable IRA rollover, which allows individuals age 70.5 and older to give up to $100,000 directly from an IRA to a charity—such as the University of Iowa Center for Advancement—without having to pay income taxes on the distribution.

The transfer—which can satisfy all or part of a required minimum distribution—generates neither taxable income nor a tax deduction, so you will still benefit even if you don’t itemize your tax deductions. The first recipient of the scholarship will be awarded during the 2020-21 academic year.

“I just wanted to help more students achieve their dreams,” said Lois.

Learn how you can make a difference by going to our planned giving website or by contacting Dayna Ballantyne, director of development, at dayna.ballantyne@foriowa.org or 319-467-3727.