Nevada System of Higher Education
Health Sciences System Newsletter 
June 2014
The Health Sciences System (HSS) was established by the Nevada System of Higher Education (NSHE) Board of Regents in 2006. Its purpose is to address Nevada's community health issues through a system-wide effort to integrate and expand the education of health professionals and to foster collaborative research in health and health care.  Through collaboration among the NSHE institutions and a broad range of external partners, the HSS intends to be a catalyst for improvement in the health and wellness of Nevada.  Visit us at:

GBC Welcomes New Dean of Health Science and Human Services

Great Basin College (GBC) welcomes Dr. Amber Donnelli as the Dean of Health Science and Human Services beginning July 1, 2014. 
Dr. Amber Donnelli was born and raised in Lamoille Nevada on a cattle ranch that sits at the base of the Ruby Mountains. Dr. Donnelli, is a graduate of Great Basin College (A.A.S., in Nursing), University of Phoenix (B.S., in Nursing), University of Phoenix (M.S., in Nursing Education), and University of Nevada Las Vegas (Ph.D., Nursing Education). Dr. Donnelli started at GBC in 2006 working on partial grant funding, which allowed her to open the Veterans Affairs telemedicine clinic in Elko providing care for rural patients.

Dr. Donnelli took a full-time teaching position at GBC and was awarded tenure in 2010.  As a tenured Professor, she has been the department chair of the Health Science and Human Services department and has been the curriculum coordinator for the Associate of Applied Science Nursing program and the RN to Bachelors of Science Nursing program. These positions reflect her knowledge and ability in leadership and management roles. Her areas of expertise are critical care, nursing leadership and management, curriculum development and evaluation, nursing education theory and concepts, and research tool development. Dr. Donnelli, is an active researcher, and current research interest include Self-Regulated learning strategies to improve critical and reflective thinking, Inquiry Based learning incorporated in theory and clinical practice, and concept based approaches to learning.


Great Basin College Associate degrees in Nursing (ADN's) have been granted since 1978; the online RN to Bachelor of Science Nursing (BSN) program was added in 2005; the Associate of Applied Science Radiology Technology in 2006; and, the Associate of Applied Science Human Services in 2007



Two UNLV School of Nursing Doctoral Students Named Jonas Scholars 


UNLV School of Nursing named two of its doctoral students Jonas Nurse Leaders Scholars, supporting their pursuits of advanced nursing degrees and preparing them to help new students address the needs of future patients.


Students Maulah Adanri and Paul Smith will each receive $20,000 for their nursing studies during the next two years, making them part of a national effort to stem the nursing faculty shortage and prepare future nurses as America's healthcare system continues to evolve.


The Jonas Center for Nursing and Veterans Healthcare awarded the School of Nursing $20,000 to support one PhD and one DNP Jonas Nurse Leader Scholar. The school matches the amount received to fund the scholarships. Adanri and Smith are the school's third and fourth recipients.


Adanri is pursuing a DNP at UNLV. She is currently the manager of cardiac telemetry, progressive care and centralized monitoring center at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles. She is a certified Adult Health Clinical Nurse Specialist. She is interested in developing a mentor program for minority nursing students designed to prepare them for leadership roles.


Smith is pursuing a PhD in Nursing, nurse educator track, at UNLV.  He is currently an assistant professor of nursing at Linfield College in Portland, Oregon, where he teaches a variety of courses in traditional and online classrooms. His clinical specialties include adult health nursing and adult critical care with emphasis on neurological conditions. His research scholarship focuses on diversity, cultural competence, and health disparities seen in the LGBT community.


The Jonas Nurse Leaders Scholar Program supports more than 250 scholars in all 50 states. Adanri and Smith join nearly 600 future nurse educators and leaders at 110 schools supported by Jonas Center programs.



TMCC Health Care Grad Roundup
Health care programs at Truckee Meadows Community College have graduated and placed students in dental assisting, dental hygiene, nursing, radiologic technology and paramedic/
EMS. A majority of the students have also demonstrated altruistic actions and are concerned community members, volunteering of their time.

* TMCC's dental assisting program has graduated 19 students, with nine already hired into jobs, and four have received offers. Julie Muhle, dental assisting professor, anticipates the remaining six will also soon be placed. "We've had 100 percent placement of our graduates for the last five years," Muhle said in March.
* All 10 dental hygiene graduates passed their written National Boards and Clinical Boards on their first attempt. The Nevada State Board of Dental Examiners will be processing licenses by the middle of July. "Our students have volunteered over 400 hours since 2012 in community service to children who were in need of dental screenings, fluoride varnish and dental sealants," wrote Lori McDonald, director of the dental hygiene program.
* In radiologic technology, 13 students will be completing the program in early August. They will be taking their national board examination at that time. "Last year (August 2013) we had 13 graduate and all passed the national board certification examination and to my knowledge they are all employed," said Warren Hejny, Program/Clinical Coordinator.
* Twenty four nursing students graduated in May, and produced a pinning ceremony complete with video, slide show, live musical selection and student speeches. "All of the 27 grads from December are employed," wrote Jody Covert, acting director of nursing. Janice Peters, a 2012 TMCC nursing graduate, was named Rookie of the Year at Saing Mary's Regional Medical Center in 2013, and Nurse of the Year at Saint Mary's this spring.
* Eight paramedic students graduated at the beginning of June. "The Emergency Medical Services faculty has done a great job in working toward our re-structured program delivery and as a result, our program enrollments are on the rise," said Chief Darryl Cleveland, director of fire/EMS programs. As a result, 68 EMT's and 24 AEMT's graduated at TMCC this Spring.

Mountain View Hospital in Las Vegas & University of Nevada School of Medicine Agree to Work Toward Expanded Medical Education Program


With the goal of greatly increasing the number of physicians serving in southern Nevada, MountainView Hospital and the University of Nevada School of Medicine have agreed to work toward the development of an expanded Graduate Medical Education (GME) program based at MountainView Hospital.


All GME positions are open to applicants from any accredited medical school. The planned GME program will represent a significant increase in existing GME positions in southern Nevada, from the current 233 to 380 or more, in several primary care and specialty disciplines. The program will help enhance the local supply of physicians serving southern Nevada and help to improve patient care access for the Las Vegas community. The expected start of the first residency program at MountainView Hospital could be as early as July 2016, depending on the speed with which a final affiliation agreement is reached. An agreement is expected to be completed before the end of 2014.


Las Vegas Mayor Carolyn Goodman said, "This is only going to help our state and is a giant step toward our long-awaited goal of establishing an expanded, quality GME program in Nevada."

"This partnership with MountainView Hospital is incredibly exciting, and is particularly notable because private hospitals have not traditionally affiliated with medical schools for large residency training programs," said Thomas L. Schwenk, M.D., Dean of the University of Nevada School of Medicine. "This agreement is a tribute to the vision and leadership of MountainView's medical staff, the Board of Trustees and the entire care team. This affiliation could lead to 50 to 60 residency and fellowship graduates each year who have a high likelihood of staying in southern Nevada and enhancing its health and health care."


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University of Nevada School of Medicine and Renown Health Announce Affiliation Agreement


A University of Nevada School of Medicine-Renown Health joint Steering Committee has been exploring a strategic partnership for the past eight months. Today, the two organizations announced approval of an initial five-year plan to benefit northern Nevadans and significantly increase the number of physicians who train and practice in Nevada. The recommendations of the Steering Committee include the creation of a formal affiliation agreement between both organizations and a joint leadership team to guide and oversee the implementation of new medical educational and research programs at the University of Nevada School of Medicine in Reno.


The Renown Health Board of Directors recently adopted the recommendations of the Steering Committee and committed $5 million of funding over the next three years.


"The Steering Committee has been acutely aware of the extraordinary opportunity provided by this affiliation to transform medical care and medical education in northern Nevada through the creation of a full, four-year medical school campus and expanded student and resident teaching capacity," said Thomas L. Schwenk, M.D., University of Nevada School of Medicine dean. "We're committed to moving forward to implement new programs in ways that are ambitious, strategic and responsible."


Donald C. Sibery, Renown Health interim CEO said, "It is exciting to see two of the largest non-profit organizations in northern Nevada come together in a collaboration that benefits our community, the region and the entire state of Nevada. This will change the trajectory of medical education and healthcare delivery in Northern Nevada, helping to ensure increased access to healthcare in the area for generations to come."


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Did you know: 
The Nevada System of Higher Education has 150 distinct Health Sciences programs throughout eight institutions with an estimated total of 18,000 enrolled students.
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