Highlights from the Clinical Placement Office
Marissa G Ramirez, MSN, RN, Zoe Ann Fitzhugh, MSN, RN & Magda Keriakos
The Placement Office, located in Simpson Tower 403, continues to be a hive of activity. We are currently in the Fall 2017 semester. Thanks to our agency partners and willing colleagues, we were able to find 570 preceptor placements for our senior undergraduate and graduate students total for the 2016-2017 academic year. It was quite a challenge; however, because of these strong academic ties with our partners and continuing outreach, our students had some remarkable clinical experiences. We anticipate placing for 500+ BSN and MSN students for this 2017-2018 academic year.
With the focus of health care moving from acute to ambulatory care centers, we are placing more students outside hospital walls. Our first ambulatory care placements were with two community health centers. In Fall 2016 we started a pilot placing senior students completing NURS 4610 Leadership/Care Management with nurse leaders and case/care managers in the Ambulatory Care Clinics at Kaiser Panorama City and at St. Joseph’s Heritage Healthcare; our collaboration with these partners continues into the 2017-2018 academic year. In addition, Zoe Anne Fitzhugh, RN, MSN and Dr. Donna Scemons, PhD, RNP teamed up with Kaiser Panorama City Ambulatory Care Clinics and St. Joseph Heritage Healthcare to develop a preceptor orientation for staff willing to precept students completing the Leadership/Case Management clinical course. Other blossoming relationships were started with LA Care, other Kaiser Ambulatory Care Clinics, Community Clinic Association of Los Angeles County, AIDS Healthcare Foundation, East Valley Community Health Center, Care More, CVS Minute Clinics, Centinela Hospital, and Torrance Memorial Medical Center. We are in the process of seeking possibilities in local school districts, local parishes, community clinics, and big companies/corporations who employ wellness nurses.
Finding student experiences is an ongoing struggle amid the growing competition with other nursing schools seeking the same scarce clinical resources. We continue to reach out to alumni, the nursing community, and to think outside the box to help solve some of these challenges. Our students also help us. They are resilient. Some suggest nurses they have met during the program or at work as potential preceptors. However, it’s when they pop into the office to say hello and give us a thumbs up that we realize why we do what we do. Then graduation arrives. Approximately 150 nurses were awarded their BSN degree and 70 with their MSN degree in the 2016-17 academic year. This is what we, the faculty and staff at the Patricia A. Chin School of Nursing, look forward to and celebrate. This is the reason why we are teachers and mentors. It’s the students who make it worthwhile.