April 21, 2020

The East Central Community College Foundation has awarded Oliphant-Martin Faculty Excellence Fund Grants to two different Healthcare Education programs which will enhance the college’s institutional commitments of Teaching & Learning and Student Success.

The East Central Community College Faculty Excellence Fund, established in 1997, was renamed in 2010 to the Oliphant-Martin Faculty Excellence Fund to acknowledge the generous contributions of alumna Dr. Beverly Henry Oliphant-Martin (’58) and her husband, John Martin.

The grant program was developed two years ago to assist the academic divisions, career & technical programs, and healthcare curriculums on campus in dealing with then state appropriation reductions. 

Kendall Simoneau, director of alumni relations and the foundation, said of the couple, “They continually give each year to East Central with the goal in mind of impacting students through education. Their support of the foundation is one that is admired and one that will continue to engage students and faculty for years to come.”

A $5,000 grant was awarded to the Associate Degree Nursing program which will be used to make improvements to the simulation lab, which provides students with a realistic hospital room setting using simulation mannequins.

Instructor Lori Luke, author of the grant request, wrote, “Constructing new walls to simulate hospital privacy rooms for each of our five simulation mannequins and a private viewing window for faculty will allow us to control the simulation scenario and objectively evaluate student learning outcomes in a more realistic setting.

“Simulation allows students to learn skills, develop clinical reasoning abilities, and become competent in caring for patients and families in a safe, private, and controlled environment. The private rooms allow space to run multiple mannequins simultaneously, which increases efficiency and allows faculty to offer diverse simulation scenarios. Simulation is a safe learning methodology that is critical to developing self-reflection, critical thinking, and clinical judgement skills for the future in nursing healthcare.”

Also receiving a $5,000 grant was the Practical Nursing program, which plans to purchase mannequins, replaceable incision parts, and replacement veins for intravenous arms to simulate providing patient/resident care.

Instructors LaShonda Boddie and Monica Stennis wrote in their grant proposal, “The various learning methodologies available with these mannequins facilitate conceptual learning that promotes critical thinking and clinical judgement skills, which provide safe, quality, evidence-based patient care. In addition to the state required lab hours, the lab is available for students to practice if remediation is needed to competently perform skills that are an integral part of measuring student learning and program outcomes.”

Selection criteria for the Oliphant-Martin grants included items such as the number of students/staff positively affected, creativity, and the impact on the institutional commitments of Student Success and Teaching & Learning found in the college’s 2020 Vision strategic plan.

The grants will be offered again in the fall of 2020.

The Martins also support two Oliphant-Martin Foundation Scholarships, the Class of 57, 58, & 59 Foundation Scholarship, and various other Foundation scholarships annually in addition to the faculty excellence fund.