Just hours before Hurricane Sandy roared ashore on October 29, 2012, Helen Yousef packed an overnight bag and reported for work at Jersey Shore Medical Center in Neptune. A member of the first graduating class of the Georgian Court-Meridian Health School of Nursing, which bestowed 20 B.S.N. degrees in May, she didn’t know what injuries the superstorm would bring or when she would return home. One thing was certain: Helen was prepared to do her job.
“Working the day of the hurricane and in days after, I learned and truly appreciated the dedication, positive attitudes, flexibility, sacrifices and continued quality of care we—as hospital team members—provided despite the adversities in the hospital or in our personal lives,” says Helen, a 2012 GCU graduate. “Our staff shrunk significantly while the patient population was the greatest I have ever seen.”
In early 2013, the New Jersey Nursing Initiative highlighted the GCU-Meridian Health program for its innovative simulation project, which pairs nursing students with medical students. Led by nursing educators Teri Wurmser, R.N., Ph.D., department chair, and Jane Bliss-Holtz, R.N., D.N.Sc., associate chair, the program has received full accreditation from the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education.
The goal was to build collaboration skills that would serve both professions once students enter the workforce. Since Helen’s pinning ceremony at the spring 2012 commencement, the university has graduated more than 30 additional nurses as the model partnership continues to attract industry attention. Georgian Court’s third class of nurses is set to march in May 2014.
Just hours before Hurricane Sandy roared ashore on October 29, 2012, Helen Yousef packed an overnight bag and rep...