(COLLEGE STATION, TX) - Designed to train and educate students with the latest tools and technology in a hospital environment, the Texas A&M Health Science Center Health Professions Education Center hosted an open house and dedication ceremony to a packed audience Wednesday for its new facility.
Formerly located in Bryan, HSC-HPEC is now on the third floor of the HSC-School of Rural Public Health Administration Building on the Texas A&M University west campus. It features state-of-the-art emergency room and delivery simulators, along with other training tools in a hospital setting.
"Today's celebration is about our dedication to addressing the nursing shortage and our commitment to addressing the needs of the health work force throughout Texas," said Nancy Dickey, M.D., President of the Texas A&M Health Science Center and Vice Chancellor for Health Affairs for the Texas A&M System. "It is about educating and training the finest students using real-life situations - situations where they must critically think on their feet and, most importantly, recognize the rewards and the consequences for their collective actions."
The HSC-HPEC interdisciplinary partnership with Texas A&M-Corpus Christi includes financial assistance from St. Joseph Regional Health Center and the College Station Medical Center.
Seventeen members of the initial class of Texas A&M-Corpus Christi nursing students from Bryan-College Station recently received their degrees, with six remaining in the area to practice nursing. Through a new partnership with the HSC, nursing students in the Texas A&M-Corpus Christi College of Nursing and Health Sciences can pursue a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (B.S.N.) degree here to help address the overall nursing shortage.
"This facility is about a greater vision - a vision that combines the expertise and the skills of nursing students, medical students, future hospital administrators and public health professionals under one roof," Dr. Dickey said. "Today is about collaboration, partnerships and relationships on many levels."
For former Texas A&M-Corpus Christi nursing student Courtney Henson, the dedication and open house was a real eye-opener.
"I think the hands-on experience from the new facility here will create more confidence and provide students a more realistic viewpoint," said Henson, who graduated last year and now is with College Station Medical Center. "The program itself helped me stay here and become a nurse."
The Texas A&M Health Science Center provides the state with health education, outreach and research. Its six components located in communities throughout Texas are Baylor College of Dentistry, the College of Medicine, the Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences, the Institute of Biosciences and Technology, the Irma Lerma Rangel College of Pharmacy, and the School of Rural Public Health.