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School of Health Sciences Capital Campaign
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The University has built a strong reputation for health science programs based on an interdisciplinary approach to education that values scholarship, clinical experience, and service opportunities. Your gift toward this renovation project will help us enhance this approach.
To fully prepare our future health care professionals, we need to provide clinical space, where the disciplines can train together, that is as close to reality as possible. Currently, our allied health programs are housed in five different buildings with no central place for inter-professional clinical training. The key feature of an expanded Sullivan Hall will be an interdisciplinary clinical simulation laboratory where faculty can teach collaborative teamwork and leadership along with clinical skills in a safe learning environment. Collaborative simulation provides an ideal environment for students to immerse in settings that mimic actual clinical scenarios that would normally include health care professionals from many disciplines working together.
Our students are synthesizing a vast array of knowledge in clinical areas with other important topics such as public health and regulatory issues. A model health science-based curriculum of this nature depends on smart classrooms that make use of the latest technology and can support hands-on activities, yet many of our facilities are lecture halls meant for passive learning. Our facilities must support problembased learning in small groups as well as specialized clinical and practice areas.
With the allied disciplines closer together, we hope to expand efforts to serve the wider community in a manner true to our Franciscan values. Our classroom and clinical curriculum will be highly integrated with the role of the DiSepio Institute for Rural Health and Wellness as well as the Center for Excellence for Remote and Medically Under-Served Areas (CERMUSA). This partnership provides many opportunities for new public health initiatives.
In recent years, our health science offerings have attracted increasing numbers of talented students; and newer areas of study such as a bachelor’s degree in public health have been added to meet the demand. There were 589 students were enrolled in allied health majors in 2000. By 2011 our enrollment had nearly doubled to 1031 students. Unfortunately our existing facilities simply can no longer support this rate of growth or deliver the level of interdisciplinary clinical interaction that these programs demand.
For years, our faculty and staff have managed to provide an outstanding educational experience for these allied health students, even as our facilities have aged. Our next generation of healthcare professionals now study in labs that are almost 50 years old, built in a time when setting foot on the moon was a national goal, not yet a reality. When you have considered how much has changed over these last five decades, you can truly understand the need for updated spaces.
Collaborative interdisciplinary simulations spaces will help prepare our students to work in an ever more complex healthcare environment. Our hope is that these facilities will provide the foundation for our health sciences to do great things as part of a healthcare team working to improve patient outcomes and provide safer patient care.
For more information on how you may support these projects, contact the Office of Advancement at 814-472-3021.
Saint Francis University117 Evergreen DriveP.O. Box 600Loretto, PA 15940