OWC Trustees Approve Revised Nursing Admissions for LPN's, New EMT Certificate Admissions Requirements, Endowed Teaching Chairs
Meeting in regular session November 21, the Okaloosa-Walton College District Board of Trustees approved revisions to the admissions requirements for the college's popular Registered Nursing program to allow individuals enrolled in a Licensed Practical Nursing (LPN) program to apply and be admitted to the college's RN program on a provisional basis until they receive an LPN license.
"Many students enrolled in local LPN programs know they want to continue on to a Registered Nursing program, but with our once-a-year admissions process, might be at a disadvantage," said OWC senior vice president Dr. Jill White. "This change allows LPN students to apply for a position in our bridge program which includes 18 special slots in Registered Nursing for LPNs."
OWC's health technology instructional offerings were also expanded as college trustees approved admissions requirements for a new Emergency Medical Technician certificate program that begins at OWC in March. The EMT program at OWC will prepare students to apply for the examinations to become a Florida certified Emergency Medical Technician and a National Registry Emergency Medical Technician-Basic.
The 11-credit OWC program for the EMT certificate will blend classroom instruction with hands-on skills training and real world clinical education to prepare students as entry level Emergency Medical Technicians. Applications to the program will be accepted starting December 1 and will be available on the OWC website.
In other items, OWC trustees approved a proposal for a long-term lease of OWC property to the Heritage Museum in Valparaiso for use in planned expansion of the museum. "We are pleased to partner with the Heritage Museum as it is such an important part of preserving our local history," said Dr. Bob Richburg, OWC president.
Trustees also approved two endowed teaching chairs for the college. An endowed chair in women's athletics, the first teaching chair for OWC's athletics program, will be named for Bluewater Bay resident Elizabeth Shwiller, an ardent fan of the OWC Raider athletic teams. Shwiller established a gift for the M. Elizabeth Shwiller Distinguished Endowed Teaching Chair in Women's Athletics through the OWC Foundation.
"This will distinguish our program by the support it brings to women's athletics," noted OWC president, Dr. Bob Richburg, who said the gift by Shwiller will exceed $165,000 once it is matched by the state. He added that the Shwiller Chair becomes the 15th endowed teaching chair established at OWC through the OWC Foundation.
The James and Christian LaRoche Distinguished Endowed Teaching Chair in Poetry and Literature was named by Frederick LaRoche in honor of his late parents. A $100,000 donation to create the endowed chair through the OWC Foundation will also be eligible for state matching funds and will provide support for the college's Communications Department.
Trustees also approved the proposed naming of the Allyn C. Donaldson, Jr. Entrepreneurial Institute at the South Walton Center for the purpose of enhancing economic development and creating entrepreneurial opportunities for business owners, students and the community. Details of the gift will be announced at a later date. The OWC South Walton Center is currently in the site-preparation stage of development.
Also approved by trustees were:
· Retirement resolutions for Bob Atwood of Niceville, an OWC Graphic Design professor for 30 years; Lucia Robinson of Fort Walton Beach, an OWC communications professor for 20 years; Colandus Chatman of Lockhart, Al, with OWC's Physical Plant for more than 19 years of service; and Roy McGriff of Fort Walton Beach with OWC's Physical Plant for more than 15 years of service;
· An endowed scholarship agreement with the National Defense Industrial Association to provide 4-year scholarships for engineering majors who begin their program of study at OWC and go on to the College of Engineering at the University of Florida. OWC has an articulation agreement with UF which provides admissions for OWC students who successfully complete a specified program of study;
· A clinical nursing agreement with Crossroads Medical Clinic in Fort Walton Beach for students in the Bachelor of Science in Nursing program to obtain clinical experience at the facility;
· An easement to Gulf Power Company at the OWC Fort Walton Beach campus to allow for electrical power to the Children in Crisis organization, which is building facilities on the campus property;
· The 2007-2008 college calendar; and
· The 2007-2008 admissions process for the OWC Collegiate High School which provides for a primary application period during February 2007, a lottery process if the applications exceed capacity, and a secondary application period during March 2007 if space is open in the charter school.