New training center for nurses is ‘second to none’
A crowd of nursing faculty members, nursing students, Cape Cod Healthcare administrators, employees and donors – along with a few mannequins – looked on during a ribbon-cutting ceremony for the new Cape Cod Community College / Cape Cod Healthcare Center for Nursing and Allied Health.
The gathering on Nov. 1 was a celebration of a partnership that created an impressive new facility in an equally impressive amount of time.
It was just over one year ago that Cape Cod Healthcare pledged $1 million toward a new classroom and clinical training facility for nursing students at the West Barnstable school.
“This renovation and expansion, which is fantastic, will provide education and clinical space that is second to none,” Michael Lauf, president and CEO of Cape Cod Healthcare, told the group.
The new center includes two exam rooms, two simulation rooms and rows of hospital beds, some of them populated by high-tech mannequins that allow students to begin their hands-on training.
“The new lab has become the bridge that connects the dots from our lecture material to our clinical experience,” said Jermaine Cardoza, a second-year nursing student and president of the college’s Nursing Student Association.
Wilkens’ Charitable Giving
Maureen Wilkens, who donated $1.1 million to the campaign for the center, snipped the ribbon to mark the official opening.
Wilkens and her late husband Frank, who died in 2011, helped fund the renovation of the college’s Wilkens Library, purchased equipment for the college’s dental hygiene program and have also been major supporters of Cape Cod Healthcare over the years, including to the Wilkens Outpatient Medical Complex in Hyannis.
Lauf praised Wilkens saying, “You’re a testament to all that’s right in the community.”
“We’ve been involved in the community since we arrived,” said Wilkens. “It’s natural that I would support the college and the nursing program. It’s a privilege to be able to help.”
Other major donors to the college’s nursing center included the Cape Cod 5 Charitable Foundation ($250,000), three anonymous donors ($100,000 each) and members of the post-acute skilled nursing facility provider community, who have pledged to raise $100,000.
“Because of this great community collaboration, we went from announcement to move-in in less than a year,” said John Cox, president of Cape Cod Community College. “Once given the green light, our facilities team worked tirelessly so our students could walk through those doors in the fall.”
Nursing students at the college earn an RN Associate’s degree and can continue at the campus to get a Bachelor of Science in Nursing through a dual admissions program with UMass Boston. RNs can work for Cape Cod Healthcare as novice nurses while they continue studying to earn their BSN degree.
Lauf also announced a pledge by Cape Cod Healthcare for $1 million in scholarships for nursing students.
“We hope to grow with you, we hope to continue to evolve with you, and we hope to invest so much more, not only in today’s students but in tomorrow’s as well,” he said.