Message from Dean Suzanne Mellon
This year has been a time of transition and change! As we end this academic year and look forward to fall 2004, we are anticipating a new home for the College of Health Professions and McAuley School of Nursing on the McNichols Campus. Our new building is going up floor by floor, and we anticipate move-in dates between August 17-23rd! We are extremely excited about the new facility and what it will mean to our College and School as we educate the health professions students of the next century. We are also highly cognizant of the many strong traditions that we will be bringing with us when we come to the McNichols Campus.
We celebrated our heritage at Our Lady of Mercy Chapel liturgy on March 7th. It was a beautiful ceremony and celebration, a time to share our memories and a time to look toward the future. An artifacts task force, ably chaired by Sister Bernadette Frank, RSM, and University Minister Bridget Deeghan-Krause has been working diligently to compile an inventory of critical artifacts and historic items on the Outer Drive Campus and make recommendations for the relocation of critical items on the other campuses. Most notable, of course, is the display of eight of the stained glass windows from the Mercy Chapel in the two-story glass atrium entrance in the new CHP building. Additionally, four of the smaller stained glass windows will be moved into the new reflection room that will be located on the first floor off the lobby area. Several of the historic furniture pieces will be integrated into the new building to carry through much of the heritage that we are so proud of. The new building will house state-of-the-art practice labs for students, individual examination rooms, a simulation classroom, a computer testing laboratory, and a human anatomy lab. Additionally, in the renovated space of the current south wing of Lansing Reilly Hall, will be several seminar rooms (one of which will be a distance learning seminar room) and student and faculty/staff lounges.
Other news and changes have also been occurring in our College. We have experienced enrollment growth and are actively engaged in recruiting more students to enroll in our programs for the next academic year. Our Physician Assistant program also underwent a re-accreditation site visit this spring. Although the final report will not be available until fall, we were pleased with the on-site evaluation and feedback about the quality of our program. We will also see a major change with the Nurse Anesthesia program moving to a University-based model by July 1st, while still continuing strong partnerships with area health care systems. We additionally saw the first graduating class of nursing students from the collaborative program with Aquinas College and Saint Mercy Medical Center in Grand Rapids. That program is thriving, and will have a waiting list for this next academic year. We have also welcomed new faculty to the College, and have seen our McAuley Nurse Managed Center begin to grow. The changes and growth of our College show the spirit of cooperation and community that characterizes our culture and our firm commitment to deliver a student-focused education that prepare leaders in health care.
Our Alumni Council has also been active this year. It added several new alumni members representing classes that have recently graduated. We had a reception for PA alumni at their annual state MAPA convention in Grand Rapids in the fall, and had a successful Alumni Week culminating in the homecoming game in February. Numerous alumni came to campus and gave guest lectures to classes throughout the college. We also celebrated the achievements of four distinguished alumni at Honors Convocation: Sister Mary Ellen Howard, RSM, for Nursing; Daniel Hendee for Health Services Administration; Earl Auty for Nurse Anesthesia; and Stuart Nathan for Physician Assistant.
We are still actively involved in fundraising for the new building and welcome
your involvement and participation. Our College Advisory Board, Alumni Council,
and University Advancement are working diligently to ensure that this state-of-the-art
facility fulfills our vision for the future. Each gift, particularly for the
building, but also for technology/laboratory equipment and student scholarships,
is greatly appreciated.
There is active planning under way to have a welcoming event for our new building and other facilities on the McNichols Campus during a week of celebration leading up to our next President's inauguration. I look forward to seeing many of you during that time. If you would like to become more involved in these initiatives to invest in our students and our future as a leader in health professions education, please feel free to contact me. I look forward to working with all of you.
Dean, College of Health Professions
McAuley School of Nursing