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Nursing head honored

Nightingale Award nominee

Jennifer VanderMeer, director of Health Sciences at CCA, has been nominated for a Nightingale Award for Excellence in Human Caring.

VanderMeer will have an opportunity to become a regional finalist at the Feb. 8 ceremony at the Doubletree Hotel in Denver. The recognition banquet is the 22nd overall, presented by the Central Colorado Area Health Education Center.

University of Colorado professor Colleen Goode cited VanderMeer’s ability to advocate on behalf of her nursing students and the creativity with which she prepares them for CU’s School of Nursing within the second component of the Integrated Nursing Pathway as key qualities prompting VanderMeer’s nomination.

“I just thought of her right away,” Goode said. “I just have so much respect and appreciation for what she does for her students and our students. She’s just a fantastic teacher and really keeps the students focused and on line. She’s works very, very hard, that’s my perception, and she seems to get things done by thinking of ideas of things that can be done in the classroom to get students to better assimilate knowledge.”

Goode and VanderMeer have worked the last three years at CCA co-teaching HPR (Pathway to Professional Nursing), the very first class in the INP.

“I see these students who start in our class and they come in with a pretty limited knowledge of nursing and they leave that class and enter (CU) with some really great concepts about what patient-centered care is, their communications skills are enhanced, and they have the beginning knowledge of the rules and responsibilities of an excellent nurse,” Goode said. “I just see this transformation from when we start through two semesters.”

The fourth INP cohort will transition to CU this spring, where it will finish the final two years of the Bachelor of Science program.

The applicant process for Cohort number five begins March 1.


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