News about Nursing

Health Sciences Students Learn From One Another in Simulations

During a three-day set of emergency simulations that involved 320 Penn College students, Timothy F. Schwartzer (in hat), an emergency medical services student from Bensalem, explains to students in other health sciences majors how paramedics would begin treatment for a patient – played by a volunteer actor – who had fallen from a second-floor balcony.

Because a patient experiencing a health emergency will likely be cared for by many health care professionals with differing specialties, Pennsylvania College of Technology has taken an active approach to ensure that students understand the roles and collaboration necessary on a health care team.

The college’s School of Health Sciences took part in two recent events that involved more than 400 students in mock patient cases on its campus.

Read more

Student Nurses Lead Collection of Hats, Gloves for Center

Members of Penn College’s Student Nurses’ Association gather with a tree full of hats, gloves and scarfs to be donated to the New Love Center in Jersey Shore. From left are Emily L. Gardner, a nursing student from McClure; SNA President Monica A. Flexer, a nursing student from Williamsport; Treasurer Josalynn M. Heichel, a nursing student from Millerstown; and Secretary Chad R. Guiswite, a nursing student from Loganton.

Demonstrating its desire to help keep the community healthy, the Student Nurses’ Association at Pennsylvania College of Technology recently led a hat, glove and scarf drive to benefit clients of The New Love Center in Jersey Shore.

The center provides weekday lunches, a food pantry and other services in the Jersey Shore area. It is a project of the Jersey Shore Ministerium, a group made up of pastors of the 34 Christian churches and directors of social help organizations in the Jersey Shore area.

Read more

Student Nurses Hold ‘Healthy Hearts’ in Caring Hands

Participating SNA members (clockwise from rear left) are Kasandra L. Smoyer, of Spring Mills; Chad R. Guiswite, of Loganton; Rene Ramirez, of Jersey Shore; and Kimberly A. Lindsey, of Milton.

Giveaways share the wellness message.

An attentive Lindsey engages her patient ...

... as nursing majors provide "on the cuff" answers.

In recognition of Healthy Hearts Week, members of the Student Nurses’ Association volunteered to conduct lunchtime blood-pressure screenings outside the Keystone Dining Room on Wednesday. Among the week’s other activities is participation in a pledge, through which faculty/staff and students are committing to healthier lifestyles. Mallory L. Weymer, coordinator of student health and wellness education/suicide prevention specialist, said members of the Penn College community can take the Healthy Hearts pledge through Friday in the Bush Campus Center lobby.
Photos by Tia G. La, student photographer

Instructor Throws Voice, Letting ‘Patient’ Have Say in Treatment

From the control room, Jessica L. Bower, simulation laboratory coordinator for nursing education, observes students and plays the role of patient.

The system provides views from three cameras mounted in the simulation lab.

Students pose for a remote photo opportunity after they finish their scenario.

A second group of students takes its turn.

Wednesday marked a “first” in Penn College’s Nursing Program, as students – and instructors – tried out the newly installed Laredal SimView system in conjunction with the program’s human simulation manikin, SimMan 3G. As part of a simulation day, associate-degree nursing students in the Foundations of Nursing course worked through three scenarios, each involving a same-day surgery patient (preoperative, postop and discharge teaching). During the postoperative simulation, faculty used SimView, which captures audio and video of the students caring for the patient. Using the system, an instructor can view and hear the simulation from a remote location, change the “patient’s” physical status, and communicate as the patient through speakers in the manikin. “We found that the system encouraged the students to engage with the patient in a more realistic way, because the voice comes from the patient instead of someone in the room,” said Laurie A. Minium, assistant professor of nursing, who provided the photos. “We had positive feedback from students and instructors.”

Susquehanna Health Aids Hands-On Learning at Flu-Shot Clinics

Penn College nursing student Abby C. Busch, of Troy, provides a flu shot to Susquehanna Health employee Tanja Speck during an employee flu shot clinic at Williamsport Hospital.

During October, approximately 30 students from four nursing classes at Pennsylvania College of Technology lent their time to help administer flu shots for Susquehanna Health employees and volunteers at the health system’s facilities.

Read more

Nursing Students Administer Flu Vaccinations

Luke D. Spang (left), of Manheim, inoculates classmate Benjamin S. Leibig, of Lebanon.

Engaging in participatory journalism, student photographer Caleb G. Schirmer – an applied management major from Sugarloaf – is vaccinated by Haylea D. Estright, of Brisbin.

James N, Ahern, an information assurance and cyber security major from Mechanicsburg, rolls up his sleeve for Monirh S. Larkpor, of Darby.

In a collaboration between Penn College’s Nursing Department and College Health Services, bachelor-degree students in Terri A. Stone’s Fundamentals of Nursing class gave flu shots Thursday in the Bush Campus Center. Health Services will continue to provide the vaccinations to faculty, staff, students, dependents and spouses from 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Monday and 8:30 a.m.-2:30 p.m. Tuesday and Wednesday. The cost of the flu vaccine is $15, payable by cash, check (payable to Penn College) or credit card. According to Health Services, the only medical reason why someone should not receive the flu vaccine is an allergy to eggs, neomycin or polymixin, or a previous life-threatening reaction to an influenza vaccine.

Three Montoursville Sisters Attend Penn College

Penn College is a family affair for the Bennett sisters, from left, Aubrey G. (nursing), Ainsley R. (graphic design) and Addey L. (diesel technology).

Depending on the preferred cliché, threes may be a threat, a charm or a crowd. For the Bennett family of Montoursville, it’s a triple blessing that all three sisters are attending Pennsylvania College of Technology.

Aubrey G., 23; Ainsley R., 20; and Addey L., 19, are enrolled in a range of majors: nursing, graphic design and diesel technology, respectively.

Aubrey said the proximity of the college to their home and the ability to save money by commuting made the choice “perfect for our situation.”

According to the sisters, they are the first generation in their family to attend college, and their mother was the encouraging factor.

“Mom really pushed for it,” Addey said. “She always said she wanted us to have what she didn’t have.”

Read more

Nursing Students Gain Firsthand Sensitivity to Age-Related Impairment

Nursing students Katelyn I. Arthur, of Muncy, and Tayler D. Mathias, of Watsontown, attempt to read a health history form while wearing glasses that mimic glaucoma.

Karen L. Martin, associate professor of medical-surgical nursing, guides students in the Fundamentals of Nursing course through the exercise.

With taped and gloved fingers and a variety of visual impairments, students attempt to remove pills from bottles.

On Wednesday, Karen L. Martin, associate professor of medical-surgical nursing, engaged students in the Fundamentals of Nursing course in a hands-on activity intended to help them relate to patients and the changes that occur with the aging process. Students taped their fingers, placed cotton in their ears and wore glasses intended to mimic glaucoma, cataracts and macular degeneration. The students were then asked to fill out health history forms, look up a phone number, retrieve pills from medicine bottles and count change. The activity is meant to help students gain competency in the areas of communication, critical thinking and cultural sensitivity. The students expressed appreciation for the activity.
Photos courtesy of the Nursing Program

Diagnosis: Future – Campers Examine Potential Health Careers

Bambi A. Hawkins, learning laboratory coordinator for the paramedic program, shows a camper proper hand placement to create a “seal” when using a bag valve mask to provide oxygen.

An important part of a fitness assessment, campers record one another’s blood pressure in the exercise science major.

A camper uses a laparoscopic camera and surgical tools in the surgical technology lab.

With assistance from a Penn College student, a camper positions radiographic equipment as she prepares to X-ray her smartphone.

A camper shows the results of her work in the dental hygiene lab: a model of her teeth.

Penn College’s School of Health Sciences was the destination for 30 high schoolers attending Health Careers Camp, a joint, two-day program of the college and Susquehanna Health. The camp offers students a chance to explore careers in the health care field. Students entering grades nine to 12 attended hands-on workshops Wednesday and Thursday in the college’s exercise science, paramedic technology, occupational therapy assistant, physician assistant, nursing, radiography, dental hygiene and surgical technology majors. To round out their experience, they toured Susquehanna Health’s Williamsport Hospital.

Penn College Honors Three Alumni at Commencement

Pennsylvania College of Technology bestowed honors upon three alumni during Spring 2015 commencement ceremonies held May 15-16 at the Community Arts Center, Williamsport.

Adam J. Yoder, of Gaithersburg, Maryland, received the Alumni Volunteer of the Year Award on May 15. Joseph H. and Barbara A. Reynolds, of Williamsport, were presented with the Humanitarian/Citizenship Award during the same ceremony. Michael K. Patterson, of Oval, received a Mentorship Award on May 16.

Read more

Practical Nursing Students Raise Funds for Wounded Warrior Charity

A group of Penn College practical nursing students, along with their faculty, recently raised $300 for the Wounded Warrior Project by hosting a dress-down day.

Students in Pennsylvania College of Technology’s practical nursing major recently raised $300 for the Wounded Warrior Project.

Students in the course Nursing Care for Adults 1 elected to host a dress-down day on April 6. On that day, each student donated $5 in exchange for donning “street” clothes in place of the clinical uniforms (“scrubs”) that are required each day they are in class or a clinical experience.

Read more

Emergency Scenarios Aid Students’ Real-Life Readiness

While students from other majors observe, nursing student Amanda S. Kopczick, of Mifflinburg, takes the temperature of “patient” Kristina N. Varner, of Lewisburg.

Around 250 students and employees from the School of Health Sciences participated in three days’ worth of emergency simulations on campus this week. In its third year, the exercise is known as the Interdisciplinary Professional Event and provides a unique opportunity for students and faculty from different majors within the School of Health Sciences to collaboratively care for patients.

Read more

Youngsters Stave Off Decay, Burn Off Energy

Brittany N. Hall, of York, with a young patient who just had sealants placed

The 13th annual Sealant Saturday event, held March 21 in Penn College’s dental clinic, was very successful (and busy). Dental hygiene students provided free services to 56 children between the ages of 6 and 15, and placed 290 sealants. All children also received a fluoride varnish treatment. In the real world, a dental sealant costs $35 to 60 per tooth, so, if you do the math, more than $10,000 worth of free care was provided to help the fight against tooth decay! Downstairs, meanwhile, students in a Pediatric Nursing class staffed a variety of stations in the atrium of the Breuder Advanced Technology and Health Sciences Center. Sealant Saturday participants and their siblings were invited to stations with painting, Play-Doh, puzzles, chess, Twister, coloring and gymnastics, filling the ATHS atrium with music and fun. (Requirements were that the activities be age-appropriate and not involve video screens.) Youngsters also received prizes, such as Penn College water bottles and lanyards, courtesy of President Davie Jane Gilmour’s office.

Read more

Small-Group Discussions Reflect Big-Picture Import of Health Care Collaboration

Whit Worman, director of Penn College's physician assistant program, facilitates a discussion that includes Kyle G. Stavinski, an emergency medical services major from Elysburg (left) and physician assistant student Kevin Z. Richardson, of Williamsport.

Scott A. Geist (left foreground), director of the surgical technology program, and Cletus G. Waldman Jr. (right-center), clinical director of radiography, engage their roundtable participants.

Heather S. Dorman, clinical director of physician assistant, lays out a scenario during the interactive exercise.

Mark A. Trueman (center), director of paramedic technology programs at the college, follows the flowing conversation.

As part of an event that spanned northeastern and northcentral Pennsylvania and involved more than 1,000 students at various locations across the region, the sixth annual Collaborative Care Summit convened at Penn College on Wednesday. Nineteen dedicated  faculty/staff facilitators from a variety of health professions, including physicians, led discussions in the Bush Campus Center among students from several colleges and universities who are pursuing studies in a wide range of health disciplines. The Collaborative Care Summit is arranged by the Northeastern/Central Pennsylvania Interprofessional Education Coalition – of which Sharon K. Waters, associate dean of health sciences, is a member. Waters coordinated the Penn College event, and co-presented the opening session with Dr. Keith Shenberger, Susquehanna Health TCMC, which brought together about 100 students from Penn College, Lock Haven University, Wilkes University and The Commonwealth Medical College. The students participated in roundtable discussions of a medical case, learning from one another how each discipline contributes to a patient’s care. “The goal of interprofessional learning is to prepare all health professions students for deliberatively working together, with the goal of building a safer and better patient-centered and community-orientated health care system,” Waters explained. “It was impressive to hear what each student contributed to the interprofessional discussion and rewarding to know our students are being prepared to work  as a collaborative team toward quality patient care.” Student participants represented 10 professions, from paramedic to pharmacy to medicine to nursing. Simultaneous events were held in Scranton and Wilkes-Barre at Marywood University, The Commonwealth Medical College, The University of Scranton, Kings College and Misericordia University.

Health Sciences Students Talk Team Approach to Patient Care

Tushanna M. Habalar (right foreground), learning laboratory coordinator for nursing education, was among the facilitators for Friday's interdisciplinary exercise.

Students representing nearly all of the majors in the School of Health Sciences gathered in the Thompson Professional Development Center on Friday to learn from one another as they discussed their differing roles in a medical case. The “tabletop” Interdisciplinary Professional Event is designed to help Penn College students understand the perspectives and duties of others on a medical team in the interest of holistic treatment for their future patients. The school provides its students with a hands-on IPE in the spring, when actors simulate medical emergencies across campus.
Photo by Kim A. Speicher, dental hygiene instructor