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  • PCC announces expanded partnerships, new programs

    Pueblo Community College has announced an expansion of its partnerships with Pueblo hospitals, as well as a new health care program at its Southwest Colorado Community College campus in Mancos.

    The leaders of St. Mary-Corwin Medical Center, Parkview Medical Center and the Colorado Mental Health Institute at Pueblo joined PCC President Dr. Patty Erjavec and Dean of Health and Public Safety Mary Chavez for a March 29 press conference in Pueblo to share part of the news.

    St. Mary-Corwin provides PCC 18,000 square feet inside the hospital for the Simulation Center and Human Anatomy Learning Center. This enables the school to offer programs such as surgical technology, medical assistant and occupational and physical therapy labs, as well as experiential learning labs.

    Parkview and CMHIP each provide one clinical scholar for PCC’s nursing program. These instructors work at PCC but are employees of the hospitals. This additional staffing will allow PCC to accept 16 additional students into the program each year. The hospitals also provide funding for two positions at the Simulation Center.

    In addition, Parkview provides equipment and supplies for the Simulation Center and funds to provide tutoring for nursing students.

    Requests from CMHIP led to the creation of programs for Certified Addiction Counselor and Licensed Psychiatric Technician, which will help create a pipeline of employees for the hospital.

    Approximately $3 million in monetary and in-kind contributions will be invested by the three hospitals over the next five years, according to Erjavec.

    SCCC Nursing Faculty Coordinator Maggie LaRose and Kathleen McInnis of the Southwestern Colorado Area Health Education Center joined the press conference via livestream from Mancos. LaRose announced SCCC’s new two-semester LPN program, which was established in response to community need.

    McInnis discussed PCC’s new articulation agreement with the University of Colorado-Anschutz Medical Campus, which will allow students on any PCC campus to transfer to CU to complete a bachelor’s degree in nursing. The agreement also allows for dual enrollment: Current PCC students in good standing may take baccalaureate courses from CU at the same time.

    “It truly takes a village to keep a strong community moving forward and we are so appreciative of the support all of our industry partners provide,” said Chavez.

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    Founded in 1933, Pueblo Community College is a premier teaching institution focused on providing academic and service excellence to help its students acquire the 21st Century skills needed to better their lives. An educational and technological leader, PCC fosters economic development and utilizes strong partnerships in the communities it serves through its Pueblo, Fremont and Southwest campuses.