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College receives $200K Golden Leaf grant

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SMITHFIELD — Johnston Community College has been awarded a $200,000 grant from the Golden Leaf Foundation to create a simulated specialty care unit at the college.

This unit will be used to train nurses with the skills to meet the growing demand to care for the most acute and critically ill patients in intensive care and progressive care units, and those in post anesthesia and post-operative care. The project will add new clinical opportunities for students in their capstone course, offering them 12 lab hours dedicated to specialty care.

To meet the current and anticipated nursing shortages, this project will increase program capacity. Johnston Community College has already received approval from the North Carolina Board of Nursing to increase the total student capacity of the associate degree program from 105 to 125.

Johnston Health, currently with about 70 specialty care openings for registered nurses, will provide some nursing students the opportunity to participate in a paid, nurse extern program that exposes those students to specialty care during the final year of nursing school. Upon satisfactory completion of the program, graduation and licensure, Johnston Health will offer them employment in specialty care. Nurse externs can also access the Johnston Health tuition reimbursement program for that final semester of nursing school.

Golden Leaf dollars will pay for medical and simulation equipment/software to establish a specialty care patient room and associated training for nursing faculty.

“This is a wonderful opportunity for our nursing students and exhibits the outstanding collaboration we have with Johnston Health and our community partners,” said Dr. Linda Smith, associate vice president of health, wellness and human services.

Renovations to develop the critical care unit are supported by Mako Medical.

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