Student Congress Updates
by Tess Carty ’25 and Kaitlyn Hladik ’25
Dean Kyle J. McInnis, Sc.D, joined us during our general meeting on Tuesday, Oct. 25 to walk us through the plan for “HealthCare in Action,” introducing us to the School of Nursing and Health Sciences. The Liberal Arts curriculum at Providence College gives nursing students a unique opportunity to be critical thinkers with a strong understanding of holistic health due to the emphasis of PC’s mission and core values. The School of Nursing and Health Sciences will bring many opportunities for the students involved, including classes regarding world languages and culture, healthcare and the arts, medical humanities and ethics, chemistry for health professions, and microbiology for health professions. A minor in Spanish for the health professions will be added creating opportunities for internships in Rhode Island and abroad for students to see healthcare through a different lens. The school has already established multiple clinical partners including CharterCare Health Partners, Clinica Esperanza, Eleanor Slater Hospital, Landmark Medical Center, Women & Infants, and more. The school will initially admit 50 new students and will be located where Fennell currently sits. Construction will start this summer, resulting in a four to five story building with plans for a simulation hospital and advanced technology for student use; however, it will be housed on the top floor of Feinstein Academic Center until construction is completed.
One student asked if there would be preparation courses for nursing exams. It was explained that preparation for these courses will be built into their curriculum and there is hope for a 100 percent first-try passing rate.
Second, a student asked if nursing majors will be able to pre-register for classes. This speaker was concerned that since biology majors are not allowed to pre-register, and since some of the required courses overlap, there would be too high of a demand for these classes, and pre-registration could increase the difficulty of accomplishing course requirements in a timely manner. McInnis expressed that plans are being prepared for students that are in these majors because they understand that the classes are already difficult to get into. The current plan includes determining the need for courses as is, and then adding between 25 to 50 extra seats for the new students. McInnis assured that they are here to help and encouraged students to reach out to them to express concerns and needs.
The next question asked if these new minors would be available to students that are not in the nursing school, such as medical Spanish. McInnis answered that these minors will be available and catered to students outside of the nursing school.
Another member asked what will make PC’s newly established nursing program competitive with already-established nursing programs. Dean McInnis explained that the College’s focus on the development of the person above all else will make it a strong program. The mission of service that comes from PC’s Liberal Arts program will be within the heart of the students. The experience that students will derive from this education at the College will allow them to think critically and have problem-solving skills in addition to spiritual and intellectual well-being. He ensures that PC belongs in the healthcare business and is positive that the students produced in the nursing school will go out and change the world.
Dean McInnis was extremely knowledgeable and passionate about this new chapter for PC, and Student Congress looks forward to staying up to date on the developments of the new school and programs through further collaboration with Dean McInnis. Following the speaker, a vote occurred in which the club It’s On Us Friars was approved. The club is aimed at diminishing the threats of sexual assault on campus and building a safe campus culture for all. The Chapter will partner with Title IX, the office of Public Safety, and the counseling center to ensure that student voices are being heard. All other legislation was tabled until the following week.