Southern State Community College in Hillsboro now boasts a state-of-the-art Health Science Center that will better prepare nursing and medical assisting students for the health care field.
The college announced this week a dedication ceremony and ribbon cutting slated for Nov. 1 from 4-6 p.m.
Southern State President Dr. Kevin Boys said one would be “hard pressed to find a finer nursing program facility.”
“Southern State’s nursing and allied health programs have long been preparing health care professions for our five counties and beyond,” said Boys. “We’re excited to see this realistic medical environment featuring state-of-the-art classrooms, simulation labs, and medical office space for our students to prepare for their profession.”
“The Health Science Center represents a timely and well-deserved investment in several of the college’s premier academic programs,” said Dr. Nicole Roades, vice president of academic affairs. “Through the leadership of the director of nursing Dr. Julie Krebs, and director of medical assisting Rhonda Davis, associate professor Bruce Fugate, and the outstanding faculty representing these areas, this concept has come to fruition.”
Construction of the 20,000-square-foot education space was recently completed and instructors are making themselves at home, according to Krebs. The HSC includes a full-scale simulation lab mirroring modern hospital and health facilities, mid-skill labs, and contemporary lecture spaces. Krebs said the college’s central campus had limited lab space, so developing a larger area for classes and simulation training was a driving force behind the project.
“It’s been exciting,” Krebs said. “We look forward to implementing the improved learning experiences that the Health Science Center supports.”
With input from students and the college’s education team, the addition was designed to be a flexible space that will adapt to different instruction techniques, Krebs said, including expanded use of simulators. The new center includes additional hyper-realistic human simulators and other updated technology. The layout of the area itself mimics a hospital, according to Krebs, with a front desk and waiting area where medical assisting students can practice patient intake and medical office duties, as well as a central hallway to a simulation center and patient care settings.
“I think it’s most important that we’ll be able to provide a learning environment that mimics an actual health care work setting,” said Krebs. “This will better prepare students to function in those areas.”
Boys said the addition, which cost $3.5 million, was funded with two capital bills as well as additional state and philanthropic sources.
“The college could not have pulled off a project of this magnitude and quality without the financial support of our partners in the governor’s office and General Assembly,” said Boys. “This investment of state resources will play an ongoing role in preparing hundreds if not thousands more future health care providers or our communities.”
Roades thanked retired chief financial officer Jim Buck, vice president of technology and infrastructure Brian Rice, director of maintenance Bryan McComas, and the college maintenance department for their contributions to the project. Also, the college extended appreciation to App Architecture (Dayton), Perkins, Carmack General Construction, and Dupler Office (Columbus).
To date, SSCC has graduated more than 1,400 registered nursing students and 1,200 practical nurses, as well as hundreds of degree and certificate graduates in medical assisting, medical technology and phlebotomy.
Prospective Health Science students are invited to a new student open house on Nov. 1 from 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Local high schools and their students are invited to tour the center and learn more about SSCC’s health science programs. While the evening event is open to the community, the daytime event will be geared specifically toward students.
Applications for all programs are currently being accepted.
Reach Southern State Community College at 937-393-3431 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
David Wright is the social media coordinator at Southern State Community College.