By Alessandra Setaro
In the fall of 2017, the College of Health Professions and the College of Nursing will have a new building to call home.
The new building will feature state-of-the-art simulation laboratories and classrooms to better students’ educational experiences in the healthcare world.
The Dean of the College of Nursing, Dr. Mary Alice Donius, says the new labs will be available for use in the undergraduate and graduate programs, as well as for the nurse practitioner program and even for online students.
“The technology is so sophisticated that we’ll be able to hold synchronized classes,” said Donius.
The new labs are set up in the likeness of real health care offices, which allows students to practice in realistic settings.
“The purpose of this is to enhance the education that they get so they can learn and practice in simulated settings,” said Donius. “I think it is one of the most beautiful, physical plants of learning that I have ever seen.”
Dr. Beth Boyd, Director of Nursing Simulation and Skills Labs, said students can expect a larger learning facility, expansion of labs and an integration of students in the health care professions as well.
“The utilization of the laboratories provides students with increased technology for space and skills,” said Boyd.
Unlike other majors, students in the College of Health Professions have a classroom component for their graduation requirements as well as a clinical component.
The new labs provide students with the ability to practice their skills for these clinical rotations.
The new labs are equipped with lifelike mannequins that perform human functions, such as breathing, having a pulse and giving birth. These very real human traits allow students to participate with active learning.
“I’m really happy about the new building because it seems like it’s going to be a really nice building to work and learn in,” said Kaitlyn Stinton, a freshman student in the nursing program.
Students will also have access to hands-on simulation dolls that will represent real-life patients.
“I’m excited that we’ll be ahead of competing schools and get hands-on experience. I feel like we’ll be up to date on what nurses are using in hospitals now,” said freshman nursing student Emily Durvin. “It’s a good way to practice hands-on services and interact with patients before we get to the real situations.”
The advanced technology and more realistic learning enviroment will increase healthcare students’ chances of being more comfortable in the working world, because experience is the key to confidence and professionalism.
“In health care today, because it is so complex and sophisticated, there is a need for students to have the ability to clinically think and reason to decrease their anxiety and increase their self confidence,” said Boyd.