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Nursing

Nursing Facilities

New nursing facilities designed to give students hands-on experience

Carthage completed construction on its Nursing Learning Laboratories in Lentz Hall in January 2017.

Carthage nursing majors now have a pair of facilities in which to hone their skills and prepare for their careers.

In January 2017, Carthage completed construction on the 3,000-square-foot Nursing Learning Laboratories in Lentz Hall. The space is divided into a simulation lab and a skills lab. The labs hosted their first classes in February, when Carthage’s inaugural cohort of nursing students began hands-on work.

“Simulation is the cornerstone of the field now,” said Professor Frank Hicks, director of Carthage’s nursing program. “Research has proven that simulation increases confidence, reduces anxiety, and assists in student critical thinking.”

The nursing simulation lab at Carthage features lifelike mannequins.

The simulation lab features four low-fidelity mannequins and four high-fidelity mannequins. The low-fidelity mannequins help students learn basic anatomy and introductory processes such as inserting an IV or catheter.

The high-fidelity mannequins are completely computerized and are designed to be lifelike. They include an adult male, a child, an infant, and a pregnant female. They sweat, breathe, have a pulse, and their eyes dilate; the pregnant female gives birth. The mannequins are designed to give students a close approximation of dealing with a human patient without being so lifelike that students can’t build the confidence necessary for nurses to possess.

“They allow students to simulate a variety of different scenarios,” Prof. Hicks said. “They allow us to simulate things that happen every day, to the things that are awful and rare but that a student still needs to be able to calmly assess and treat, like an aortic tear after a catheterization.”

Physical treatment is only part of a nurse’s duty. Interacting with patients verbally is also a large part of a nurse’s day-to-day routine. Carthage theatre students will put their skills on display to help nursing students hone their bedside manner; the theatre students will verbally express symptoms and simulate the things that no mannequin — no matter how lifelike — can.

“A lot of people think that nursing is a natural science,” Prof. Hicks said. “It’s not. It’s a human science.”

Carthage completed construction on its Nursing Learning Laboratories in Lentz Hall in January 2017.

In addition to the mannequins, the lab is outfitted with a video debriefing room so students can see what they did right and where they can improve. Repeating simulations and examining the results is key in educating nurses. That repetition is part of a teaching strategy called determined practice, which is viewed as a best practice in the nursing education community.

“The student can repeat the simulation as many times as necessary to master a particular situation prior to having this type of patient in real life,” said Christine Ross, Carthage’s coordinator of learning laboratories. “Practice really does make perfect, and that preparation is key in a field where being totally prepared is vital.”

The facility replaces the old campus bookstore area on the main level of Lentz Hall (the bookstore is now located in the new Campbell Student Union). Other upgrades to the facility include a  completely new HVAC system, new plumbing, and a total overhaul of video and internet wiring. 

More Information

Interested in joining Carthage’s newest undergraduate program, or learning how Carthage educates nurses differently? View the program’s admission requirements or contact Ashley Hanson in the Office of Admissions.

Want to support Carthage nursing students through scholarship and other philanthropic support? Contact Bridget Haggerty in the Office of Institutional Advancement at 262-551-6572 or bhaggerty1@Carthage.edu.

  • Quick Facts

    • Carthage is named a Best Midwestern College by The Princeton Review (2017), a designation given to only 25 percent of four-year schools.

    • Scheduled to open in fall 2018, a new residential tower will offer suite-style housing and two floors of shared campus spaces for gaming, cooking, group meetings, or quiet studying. Learn more about The Tower

    • You’re going to need brain fuel. Grab a morning coffee and a snack and Starbucks or Einstein Bros. Bagels. Later, meet friends at “The Caf,” where the specials change daily but the staples are constant, or swing through “The Stu” for wins, a burrito, or a sub. A new option, Carthage Cash, even covers some off-campus meals.

    • Two years in, the Bachelor of Science in Nursing is one of Carthage’s fastest growing programs.

    • 96% of Carthage alumni report that they have secured a job or are continuing their studies six months after graduation. Visit Career Services.

    • 91% of employers say critical thinking, communication, and problem-solving skills matter more than your major when it comes to career success. Learn more about how the liberal arts prepare you for a successful career.

    • Lots of schools wear the four-year label. Carthage stands behind it. 95% of Carthage graduates earn their degrees in four years. Learn more

    • Oscars. Emmys. Tonys. Golden Globes. The playwrights we’ve brought in have them. Each year, the Carthage Theatre Department commissions an original script by a renowned playwright for its New Play Initiative. Carthage students then work with the writer to stage it. 

    • As a freshman in the highly selective Honors Program, learn how to gain expertise in anything from music to forest ecology. After that, tackle a contemporary social, economic, or political problem. If you like, you can live on an Honors-only floor of a Carthage residence hall. 

    • Every January and June, between 20 and 40 students travel to the island of Ometepe, Nicaragua, where they spend two weeks studying tropical ecology, volunteering in rural medical clinics, and helping to construct freshwater facilities. 

    • The Carthage nursing curriculum delivers nearly 1,100 hours of clinical experience by the time a student graduates from the program. Carthage partners with regional health facilities including the United Hospital System and Aurora Health Care. 

    • In 2016 and 2017, Carthage was named a top producer of Fulbright Scholars by the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs.

    • Things look new at Carthage because they are. Our athletic and recreation center, student union, computer labs, audiovisual production suite, and numerous residence halls have all been constructed or newly renovated in the last 10 years. Our new science center caps it off.

    • Carthage offers majors, minors and concentrations in more than 50 areas of study, from archaeology to athletic training, neuroscience to music theatre.

    • Our Summer Undergraduate Research Experience offers select students a research budget, one-on-one mentoring with a professor, and 10 weeks of analyzing, deciphering — and getting paid.

    • So the lake is kind of a focal point, but there’s a lot more to love about our campus — like the fact that our 80-acre campus is also an arboretum and wildlife sanctuary. Focused on keeping campus lush forever, we plant between 50 and 75 new trees every year from a variety of species.

    • Carthage was founded in 1847. That’s more than 170 years of leaders, makers, and go-getters going out and going forth. Read more about Carthage’s rich history.

    • More than 90 percent of our students receive financial aid, a hefty chunk of which is scholarships and grants — including $1.25 million annually from the Presidential Scholarship Competition and numerous Merit Scholarships. Learn what’s available.

    • Abraham Lincoln was an early Trustee of the College, and U.S. Secretary of State John Hay was a Carthage alum. The two still have a proud place on our campus. Spend some time with them in our Sesquicentennial Plaza. On warm days you’ll find professors leading their classes here.

    • Come to Carthage; hear yourself think — think … think …
      Legend has it that Sesquicentennial Plaza holds a perfect echo. Just stand with both your feet on the “1847,” face Straz, and start talking. “You’re the only one who can hear you, but you’ll be crystal clear,” promises English and theatre alumna Mikaley Osley.

    • Our Great Lake provides Carthage students with some amazing views. Think classes on the beach, lake views from the lab, and sunrises from your dorm room. “I love waking up in the morning with the sun shining off the lake. Nothing compares to the view in the morning,” says biology and neuroscience major Ann O’Leary.

    • Carthage awards up to 30 Presidential Scholarships each year, which range from 75% tuition up to full tuition, room, and board. Learn more.

    • For a full decade, NASA has selected Carthage students to conduct research aboard its zero-gravity aircraft. Lately, the stakes have risen. A team of underclassmen is grinding to prepare a tiny but powerful Earth-imaging satellite for launch to the International Space Station. Learn more about the space sciences at Carthage

    • Carthage is the only college or university in the Midwest where every freshman takes a full-year sequence of foundational texts of the Western intellectual tradition. Learn about the Carthage core.

    • With a student-faculty ratio of 12:1, your professors will know who you are. They will also know who you want to be — and how to get you there. Meet our faculty.

    • There are more than 120 student organizations on campus, from Amnesty International to Chemistry Club, to Frisbee and Latin Belly Dancing. See how easy it is to get involved.

    • True story: There are more than 27 art galleries, a dozen museums, and nine theatres within 25 miles of Carthage. Some highlights: The nationally recognized Racine Art Museum, the world-renowned Art Institute of Chicago, and the Milwaukee Art Museum. Learn more about our location.

    • What’s better than one professor? Two professors. What’s better than two professors? Two professors from totally different fields teaching a single class. There’s debate. Discussion. Differing perspectives. This is where the magic happens. That’s why every student takes a Carthage Symposium.

    • Imagine presenting your original research at an international conference — as an undergraduate. Carthage is dedicated to undergraduate research. Learn more about current opportunities.

    • You can’t hide here — not with only 17 other students in the classroom with you. That’s going to be rough some mornings. But later, when you’re able to argue your point of view thoughtfully, express your opinions succinctly, and meet challenges head-on, without fear … Yep, you’ll thank us.

    • Carthage is ranked No. 11 in the country for student participation in short-term study abroad. Every J-Term, hundreds of students travel all over the world on faculty-led study tours. Imagine a month in Sweden, Rome, Cuba, Senegal, India, Japan …

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