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May 13, 2011     Cape Gazette
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4 FRIDAY, MAY 13- MONDAY, MAY 16, 2011 NEWS cape Gazette $3 million raised so far; $3 million to go By Dennis Forney dnf@capegazette.com Looking to double the number of stu- dents it graduates each year, Beebe School of Nursing has passed the halfway point in a $6 million campaign to construct new facilities. The first $3 million is coming from state and federal grant money. At a kickoff party May 7 at the Dewey Beach home of Alex Pires for donors and other supporters of the school, to begin raising the second $3 million, Beebe Med- ical Center President Jeff Fried said the expansion will help address the shortage of nurses being felt nationally and locally. "We're turning applicants away each year," said Fried. "This campaign will al- low us to build the first phase of a nursing Alex Pires, left, is serving as co-chairman of the campaign. He is shown here with Beebe Medical Foundation Chairman Paul Mylander, center, and Dr. James Beebe Jr. Beebe School of Nursing info, history and remains the Only'nursing school located on the grounds of a hospital in Delaware. Graduates earn a Nursing Diploma in Professional Nursing: a:thre~ with the first year completed at a community college or . university Beebe School of Nursing graduates had a 95,2 paMing rate for the 2010 nursing license exam -the highest rate of any nursing school in Delaware. Beebe's: graduates have historically been first or ~KI in the ~!te in passing rate Student body indudes 86 pemlm fmal and 14 perce male They're from Sussex County; 76 percent; Kent County, 14 percent; with the remainder from Maryland and -_ New Jersey Annual Operatingbudget is ...: school plan which will include new con- struction and a remodeling of the nursing school's main building built in 1959. The building this campaign will fmance is a three-story, 18,000-square-foot structure for classrooms and clinical laboratories that will enable us to expand our incom- ing classes each year, from 30 to 60 stu- dents." According to information provided by Beebe Medical Foundation - the fundrais- ing arm for Beebe Medical Center - there were 163 applicants in 2010 for 30 posi- tions. Fried said a former residential building for the school will be demolished to make way for the new clinical clffssroom build- ing. For several decades, Beebe School of Nursing provided housing for its students, many of who came from outside Sussex County and Delaware. But in recent years, the majority of the students are from Sussex County. Fried noted that the average age for a nursing school student is now about 25 or 26. "Many of them are people who are starting second careers, living and working in Sussex County. We found there was no longer a need to pro- vide housing for the students." Fried said in addition to the classroom space, the campaign will finance the pur- chase of up-to-date teaching equipment including computerized simulator pa- tients. "Some of the models even deliver babies," said Fried. The majority of Beebe School of Nursing students move into po- sitions at Beebe Medical Center. Pires, of Dewey Beach, and Jim Rich- mann, of Lewes, are chairing the cam- paign for the f'mal $3 million for Phase 1. The second phase will include remodel- ing the existing nursing classroom build- hag on the Lewes campus, andconstmc- tion of another, smaller classroom build- hag behind the current classrooms. "We're looking for you to help us;' said Pires to those at the event. "That's why .you're here. All of us have been fortunate to make enough money that we have enough left over to help others. We've had a number Of large gifts to help get us started, and now we're asking for others to get involved to make this happen. Nurses are becoming increasingly important. That's what this is all about." Ken Jackson, of Barrington, NJ., was among those who attended the event and who has given a large donation for the campaign. "My mother was a graduate of one of the earliest classes at Beebe School of Nursing," said Jackson. "I'm doing this for her." Dr. ]ames Beebe, son of one of the founders of Beebe Medical Center and a longtime surgeon at the hospital and member of the hospital's board of direc- tors, spoke gloWingly of the school and DENNIS FORNEY PHOTOS AMONG THOSE ON HAND to help boost the campaign for expansion of the Beebe School of Nursing were (I-r) Bonnie Austin, nursing supervisor at the school; Quanda Custis, nursing school alumna and Beebe Medical Center emergency room nurse; Ken Jackson, nursing school benefactor; Connie Bushey, nursing school director; Nina Beebe Hazzard, nursing school curriculum coordinator; and, seated, Aman- da Richter, nursing school class of 2011. Shown With a model of the new nursing school complex are (I-r) Jim Richmann, campaign co-chairman; Jeff Fried, Beebe Medical Center president and chief executive officer; and Beebe Medical Foundation Ex- ecutive Director Alex Sydnor. L 1 I : : .... /, : bu hospital. "I've been in and ut f the hspital fr I the past six months due to illness. I can :, : - tell you that I've never had better care. i .ii(!i': i/i..:.. :i _i .i: The nurses were wonderful, the food was i - i " i -: great and the housekeepers were friendly and helpful. Beebe has a great nursing . program. They take good care of you." BEEBE MEDICAL FOUNDATION IMAGE This is an artist's rendering of what the Beebe School of Nursing will look like when all phases of new con- struction and remodeling are complete.