KOKOMO, Ind. – Nursing students at Indiana University Kokomo will now have the opportunity to hone their clinical skills in a state-of-the-art, million-dollar simulation center that emphasizes patient-centered care and evidence-based training.
The opening of the St.Joseph Hospital Clinical Simulation Center was marked today (August 24) by a ribbon cutting ceremony hosted by Chancellor Michael Harris and St.Joseph Hospital CEO Kathy Young. The Center was made possible in large part by a generous gift from St.Joseph Hospital and St. Vincent Health to IU Kokomo.
“We deeply appreciate and thank those who have made this possible. This is an exciting and forward-looking opportunity that is consistent with our efforts to transform the region,” Harris said to a large crowd of students, faculty, staff, and community members. “The Center will provide future nurses opportunities to enhance their skills and knowledge level that is needed to provide world-class health care. This facility matches the exceptional quality of our faculty and staff. It will also have a direct impact on the economy of north central Indiana.”
Young emphasized the importance of nursing students having the educational experiences necessary to prepare them for future jobs.
“Today, months of dreaming, planning, and building have come to fruition and we are ready to open this innovative new Center. We celebrate the promise that this clinical simulation lab makes to our community that together we will provide better, safer, and more human health care to the patients that we serve.” Young said. “This Center will be instrumental in preparing students to graduate with greater confidence in their abilities and more highly developed critical thinking skills. As these new nurses go on to enter the workforce, the result will be even better health care in our region.”
Construction on the 3,250 square-foot nursing simulation lab began last summer. It includes four simulation suites, two control rooms, a nursing station, a faculty office and two classrooms.
“We have the third largest public school of nursing in the state of Indiana,” said Linda Wallace, dean of the School of Nursing. “This lab will benefit over 300 nursing students each semester and eventually graduate nursing students. These experienced nurses will positively impact the health of the residents of north central Indiana.”
Many representatives from St.Joseph Hospital attended the event, as well as community members and public officials. State Rep. Bill Friend shared his support of the new simulation center.
“This extension of service by having a simulator that will allow for expansion of service to students and the community is just a tremendous asset,” Friend said. “At the state level, we are more than pleased that these types of facilities are becoming available to our students as we move into an age where we will need more health care services this training will provide. Congratulations to IU Kokomo and what this means for north central Indiana.”
Julie Kitchell spoke on behalf of Congressman Joe Donnelly, congratulating IU Kokomo for providing necessary tools for the best experience.
“We are fortunate to have excellent educational facilities like Indiana University Kokomo that provide hardworking men and women with the opportunity to increase their knowledge and skills every day,” Kitchell said. “I congratulate Chancellor Harris and everyone at Indiana University Kokomo on the grand opening of the new St. Joseph Hospital Clinical Simulation Center.”
Other supporters of the simulation center include Jean and Milt Cole of Cole Hardwood in Logansport, IU Health North Hospital, Riverview Hospital, Dave and Linda Wallace, and IU Kokomo Nursing Alumni.
Indiana University Kokomo serves north central Indiana.