NPC Opens Nursing Simulation Lab With CHI Donation
National Park College (NPC) hosted an open house for a new nursing clinical simulation
lab before this month’s regular Board of Trustees meeting September 26.
CHI St. Vincent Hot Springs pledged a $500,000 gift over three years to the NPC nursing program in September 2017 to train additional nursing students. The hospital also agreed to commit $100,000 per year for financial aid packages for NPC nursing students. NPC used the funds to purchase equipment for a state-of-the-art clinical simulation lab to provide students with hands-on experience in the learning environment. The lab includes male and female simulation mannequins and accessories, audio visual equipment, and specialized software.
The investment has helped to alleviate bottlenecks in the clinical pipeline allowing more slots for students and providing extensive simulation training for faculty. As a result, the Registered Nursing program had a 14 percent increase in enrollment this semester, for a total of 142 registered nursing students. Dean of Nursing and Health Sciences, Janice Ivers reported 100 percent of graduates have jobs within six months or less of graduation and all nursing students received 100 percent graduate satisfaction from employers.
Guests toured the new simulation lab and were given demonstrations by program faculty. Ivers expressed her appreciation to CHI St. Vincent and said, “We have doubled the amount of simulation that we are able to give our first year students this year and that wouldn’t have happened without these new simulators.”
Tony Houston, president of CHI St. Vincent Hot Springs said he was proud to partner with NPC to help create a healthier community through nursing education. He said, “The product you are putting out is really elevated.” Houston noted the hospital had a significant shortage of nurses when he began discussions with NPC about the need to produce more nursing graduates. “We made a commitment to change our community together and really keep jobs in Garland County,” he said. “This is exciting. You should be very proud of yourselves because you changed our stars from having 115-120 openings to now a more manageable number, like 15-20. We can deal with that,” Houston added.
Pictured left to right is Houston with CHI staff Rhonda Mayfield, clinical director; Dr. Brian Williams, chief nursing officer, and Janice Ivers, Dean of Nursing and Health Sciences with the “Nursing Anne” simulator.