Elon names Emory professor as new dean of School of Health Sciences

Elon University has selected Maha Lund, currently at Emory University School of Medicine, as the new dean of its School of Health Sciences following a national search. She begins her new role later this spring, the university announced Monday morning.

Lund comes to Elon from the Emory University School of Medicine, where she has served as the division chief and director of the Physician Assistant Program since 2014. She will bring to Elon “her wealth of experience with patients as a clinician, in the classroom as a professor and within health care education as an administrator,” according to Elon’s announcement of Lund’s appointment.

Dr. Maha Lund

According to Elon, during her time at Emory, she has advanced efforts to improve “health equity, including recruiting and supporting faculty and students from underrepresented populations, while expanding opportunities for students to participate in service learning, such as the program’s flagship Emory Farmworker Project that annually provides free health care to 1,800 farmworkers and their families.”

As dean of the Elon University School of Health Sciences, Lund will report to the provost and will oversee the departments of Physical Therapy Education, Physician Assistant Studies, and Nursing, with 28 full-time faculty and more than 300 graduate and undergraduate students.

The dean is responsible for providing intellectual and administrative leadership for the School of Health Sciences while strengthening Elon’s engaged, active and experiential education offerings within a rigorous and challenging academic environment, according to the university’s description of her responsibilities.

Lund will be relocating to Elon with her husband, Mack. They have two married daughters, Linda and Nadia, and a 10-month-old granddaughter, Penny.

Elon President Connie Book said Lund’s strong record of student-centered education, excellence in clinical practice, and commitment to service leadership will be a considerable benefit to the School of Health Sciences as it continues to grow and evolve.

“Dr. Lund has a demonstrated commitment to excellence and to ensuring that students have a holistic educational experience that will equip them to provide the best level of care for their patients,” Book said. “Her extensive scholarly record and efforts to ensure access to educational opportunities make her the right leader for Elon’s School of Health Sciences. As dean, Dr. Lund’s passion for creating access to healthcare across our communities and our country will inspire all of us. Our faculty, students and their future patients will benefit from Dr. Lund’s leadership in the years ahead.”

Lund said she is excited to join Elon at this important time in the school’s history. Founded in 2011, the school added a four-year Bachelor of Science in Nursing program and a 16-month Accelerated Bachelor of Science in Nursing in 2021. The school includes an Anatomical Gift Program that supports its academic programs and fosters deep community connections, including the student-run Health Outreach Program at Elon and work with patients at the Open Door Clinic of Alamance County, both of which provide care to members of the community without charge.

“I am honored and energized to take on this important role at Elon,” said Lund. “During the interview process, I enjoyed meeting exceptional faculty, staff, students, and university leaders. The School of Health Sciences is well positioned, and I look forward to collaborating with leaders at Elon and across the community to drive continued excellence and growth. I am grateful to join such a highly respected institution that values diversity and learner-centered education.”


Educational, professional background

Lund holds a bachelor of arts in German and a master of arts in German Literature from Brigham Young University. She was motivated to enter the field of health care while assisting her husband’s grandmother as she recovered from surgery and became interested in health professions through her mother, a nurse and nurse educator.

In 2001, Lund earned her master of physician assistant studies from Chatham University in Pittsburgh. Her passion for teaching is rooted in her time teaching German courses to help support herself in school, and later precepting students while working as a hospitalist physician assistant in Boston. She was a founding member of the Physician Assistant Clinical Educator service – the first internal medicine physician assistant team at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston.

Lund became an assistant professor at the Massachusetts College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences in Boston, where she would become assistant program director in 2010 and then program director in 2011. As a leader within the college, she helped successfully navigate challenges including a faculty shortage, program re-accreditation and an increase in class size.

She earned her doctor of health science from NOVA Southeastern University in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, in 2012, with her doctoral work focused on physician assistant education and leadership in health professions.

In 2014, Lund was named to her leadership post at the Physician Assistant Division at the Emory University School of Medicine.

At the national level, Lund serves as a commissioner for the Accreditation Review Commission on Education for the Physician Assistant, as a member of the Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Commission of the American Academy of Physician Associates, and recently completed two terms as a trustee of the PA History Society.