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GC to cut ribbon on NAH facility

A ribbon-cutting to celebrate the opening of the Nursing and Allied Health Building on the Gordon College campus will be held Friday, April 1 at 1 p.m. ’We welcome the public to attend this celebration and then tour this impressive, state-of-the-art building,’ said interim Gordon president Shelly Nickel. ‘It truly is the jewel of our beautiful campus. Most importantly, it’ll enhance the education, training and skills our nursing and allied health students receive during their academic experience.’ The nursing and allied health programs have been located in Smith Hall. The 1939 Smith building becomes home to the education program after renovation. At just over 59,000 square feet, the three-floor NAH building is designed to function much like a teaching hospital. The first floor contains two theatretype lecture halls. There are also two regular classrooms and a multi-function collaborative learning center. The main entrance to the building is from a plaza leading from the center of campus. The second floor was designed to simulate an actual hospital ward as closely as possible. There is a classroom on this floor as well as four named labs. Through a generous donation from Upson Regional Medical Center, the hospital was able to have two labs named after long-time board trustees. The William C. Byrd Pediatric Simulation Laboratory is named after the URMC trustee who served from 1987 to 2006. The lab is designed to simulate a pediatric ward. Here students will practice with realistic ‘simbabies’ that can be programmed to cry, move and react to stimuli. Down the hall is the George H. Hightower Sr. Adult Simulation Laboratory. The late Hightower served on the URMC board from 1987 to 2003. In this lab are realistic adult mannequins who respond much like live patients. Also on the second floor is the Pat Brown Practice Laboratory, named after Griffin resident Pat Brown who served as interim director of the Gordon College Nursing Program from 1985-93, again from 1999 to 2000 and from 2002-06 when she retired. The practice lab is where most of the teaching takes place. Brown was known for her nurturing approach to teaching and her famous mantra ‘Don’t forget to wash your hands!’ Nursing alumni and friends made this lab possible. The Aldora Check Off Laboratory was named after the town of Aldora due to a generous donation from the town’s leadership. Aldora has helped support the quality of life in Lamar County since the town was incorporated in 1906. In the check off lab the student practices critical skills fundamental to becoming a nurse, demonstrating what they have learned in a oneon- one controlled environment. The building’s third floor contains administrative offices, a classroom, computer lab and an anatomy and physiology lab. Gordon’s nursing program was started in 1973 when 50 students entered. Since then, more than 1,900 students have graduated from the program. ’We have nurses working all over the U.S.,’ said Joan Cranford, chair of the division of nursing and allied health. ‘Several have stayed right here as instructors.’

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