Nursing program still growing

It is impossible to think about UMHB without thinking of the nursing program.
This major has a higher enrollment than any other program on campus, and if you aren’t a nursing major yourself, you definitely know one.
One of the most familiar sights on campus is the iconic purple scrubs that the nursing students wear.
In 1903, a school of nursing was founded at Scott & White Memorial Hospital in Temple.
The program was later transferred to UMHB, and in 1970, it became a baccalaureate degree program. In 1972, the first group of nursing students graduated from the program with 28 students in the class. Since its beginnings at UMHB, the nursing program has earned accreditation from the Texas State Board of Nurse Examiners, the National League for Nurses and the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education.
The Scott & White School of Nursing currently has 23 faculty members as well as 57 adjunct faculty members.
As of fall 2017, the program has 699 enrolled students, making it the largest on UMHB’s campus.
The nursing program is housed in the Isabelle Rutherford Meyer Nursing Education Center. The state-of-the-art building is over 76,000 square feet and contains a simulation hospital, clinical labs, offices, classrooms, a chapel and other rooms that help nursing students prepare for the workforce.
Junior nursing major Emily Crowson loves being a part of UMHB’s nursing program.
After graduation, she hopes to work as either a labor and delivery nurse or a nurse in a neonatal infant care unit (NICU).
She says that the best part of the nursing program is clinicals, where students get to practice a real-life application of their skills. “Clinicals [are] awesome. That’s my favorite part.” One of the most life-changing experiences she has had as a nursing student was witnessing and assisting with the birth of a baby.
“That was the most amazing experience…I’ve ever witnessed in my life…I think that’s what made me want to try to do labor and delivery.”
In addition to offering undergraduate nursing degrees, UMHB offers masters and doctorate degrees within the program.
Dr. Lynn Heise serves as an assistant professor and the Interim Director of Doctor of Nursing Practice.
She says that the best part of the nursing program is the simulation labs.
“The faculty [members] that work in simulation are very supportive of us. The [undergraduates], before they actually get into the hospital, have already learned the skills on mannequins…so it’s not quite as frightening.”
Not all nursing programs have simulation hospitals for their students to use, and by providing this for the students, UMHB has given the nursing students a competitive edge in the workforce.
Students who participate in the nursing program can expect to find a job at a successful hospital, clinic, emergency room or other medical setting.
UMHB’s nursing program sets them up to be successful in their careers, and it prepares them to share medical expertise and the love of God with their patients.

Dr. Lynn Heise instructs graduate nursing students in the Isabelle Rutherford Meyer Nursing Education Center.
Photo by Emily Mahan

Author: Emily Mahan

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