Two MCCC Nursing Labs Renovated and Reopened

11-26-07

WEST WINDSOR, N.J. -- On Nov. 20 Mercer County Community College celebrated and cut ribbons to reopen two renovated and newly-equipped Nursing laboratories in the Math/Science building. The renovations were made possible by two generous donors, former Chair of Nursing and Allied Health HelenMarie Dolton, and Johnson & Johnson through its "Campaign for Nursing's Future."

The laboratories are now equipped with state-of-the-art mannequins, new hospital beds and side tables, wheelchairs and other hospital equipment. An adjoining computer lab now has all new laptop computers. Two of the mannequins simulate realistic human sounds such as heart beat, blood pressure, coughs, moans, etc. "Our students are now working on equipment that mirrors what they will see in the hospitals, and getting a more accurate picture of patient response," said Director of Nursing Linda Martin, also now serving as Interim Dean of Science and Health Professions.

Pictured during a ribbon cutting event to reopen two renovated and newly-equipped Nursing education labs at Mercer County Community College are, from left, MCCC President Patricia Donohue, MCCC Foundation Board Member David Sheffield of Johnson & Johnson, Andrea Higham of Johnson and Johnson, HelenMarie Dolton, former chair of Nursing and Allied Health at Mercer, MCCC Foundation Board Member Karen Kennedy of Dow Jones, and Nursing students Kene Booker-Taylor and Dorota Golczewski.

Donor HelenMarie Dolton's financial support underscores her lifelong commitment to nursing education. She began her career at Mercer in 1967, when she initiated the college's Nursing program. She later became chair of Nursing and Allied Health, then chair of the Division of Science and Allied Health. During her career she saw more than 2,000 students graduate from the program. Since her retirement in 1992 she has worked as a volunteer with her church and Senior Net.

Johnson and Johnson's "Campaign for Nursing's Future" is a multi-year public awareness campaign launched in February of 2002, designed to enhance the image of the nursing profession, recruit new nurses and faculty, and help retain nurses currently in the profession. In January 2006 the campaign was honored with the Ron Brown award for corporate leadership at a White House ceremony.

Because of Johnson & Johnson's support, this fall Mercer launched a new program to prepare participants in one semester for jobs as Certified Nursing Assistants or Home Health Aides. The noncredit program is designed to be an entry point for students interested in entering the health professions. MCCC is partnering with Lawrenceville Nursing and Rehabilitation Center, which will serve as the clinical site for hands-on training.
In her comments MCCC President Patricia Donohue said "Nursing is the number one workforce need in Mercer County. It is significant that we have this type of support as we work to move students through our program and into the workforce."

Last year 78 students graduated from Mercer's Nursing program. After earning their associate degrees in Nursing, the students are eligible to take the licensure exam to become registered nurses. Mercer also works with Capital Health System and St. Francis Medical Center in cooperative nursing programs.

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