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11/14/2008
Hudson Valley Community College Foundation Raises $150,000+ to Benefit Endowment for Health Science Programs Photos Available

CONTACT: Paula Monaco (518) 629-8071 or (518) 378-3835 cell or p.monaco@hvcc.edu
FOR RELEASE: Immediate, Friday, Nov. 14, 2008

Photo Available Photo Gallery Available

The Hudson Valley Community College Foundation has attracted nearly $150,000 in commitments to date in support of an endowment created to ensure that the college has the resources it needs to sustain its high-cost, high-demand Health Science programs.

Nationally and locally there are documented shortages of individuals entering the health science professions. Colleges are simply not graduating sufficient numbers to keep up with the demand.

At its third annual Celebration of Excellence gala on Thursday, Nov. 13 at the Crowne Plaza in Albany, supporters recognized the college's programs in Respiratory Therapy, Radiologic Technology/Medical and Cardiac Sonography, EMT-Paramedic, Mortuary Science and Nursing.

With costs to educate students in these professions topping the $30,000 mark over the two-year associate degree term, most schools who continue to offer these programs run them as loss centers for the institution. This is the case at Hudson Valley Community College, where tuition and related fees are approximately half of these total costs.

The endowment will be used to meet a variety of needs, including equipment and curriculum development. If it continues to grow, it may ultimately allow the college to fund the hiring of additional faculty, which would allow for the expansion of these programs.

Christina Fitzgerald, president of CPF Management Corporation and a member of the college's class of 1971, was the event's honorary chairperson. Working with Fitzgerald on the plans for the gala were Hudson Valley Department Chairperson Patty Hyland, Respiratory Therapy; Department Chairperson Jeanne Kelleher, Medical Imaging; Department Chairperson Elaine Reinhard, Mortuary Science; and Department Chairperson Carol Bosco, Nursing.

The Hudson Valley Community College Foundation announced the creation of the A Celebration of Excellence gala and the building of endowments for high-cost, high-need academic programs in the winter of 2006. Over the past two years, the galas – which featured the Dental Hygiene program and the Energy, Building, and Engineering Science and Technology programs – have raised almost $500,000 in support of the endowed funds.

The Foundation is a not-for-profit charitable corporation formed in 1983 to philanthropically support the college's mission. Gifts to the Foundation from alumni, corporations and friends are used to enhance programs, facilities and scholarship opportunities at the college.

Founded in 1953, Hudson Valley Community College offers more than 70 degree and certificate programs in four schools: Business; Engineering and Industrial Technologies; Health Sciences; and Liberal Arts and Sciences; and workforce and academic preparation programs offered through the Educational Opportunity Center. One of 30 community colleges in the State University of New York system, it has an enrollment of more than 13,000 students, and it is known as a leader in distance learning initiatives and worker retraining. Hudson Valley has more than 65,000 alumni.

Health Science Programs benefiting from the event were:

Respiratory Care, an allied health specialty employed with medical direction in the treatment, management, diagnostic evaluation and care of patients with deficiencies and abnormalities of the cardiopulmonary system. Respiratory Care Practitioners are involved with patients of all ages, from the premature infant to the geriatric patient with a variety of lung and heart problems and diseases. The job responsibilities consist of diagnosis, treatment, evaluation, and rehabilitation of the respiratory patient under direct supervision of the physician. This program is established as a cooperative educational endeavor with Albany Medical Center Hospital. The Respiratory Care program is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP) and the Committee on Accreditation for Respiratory Care (CoARC). Graduates of the program are eligible to sit for the National Board of Respiratory Care Certification and Registry Exam.

Radiologic Technology, Diagnostic Medical Sonography and Echocardiography, programs associated with the Medical Imaging Department, that provide the community with needed competent, qualified imaging specialists. All of the programs coordinate academic study with clinical patient care experience. Students attend clinical education courses at affiliated sites around the Capital Region and beyond. The graduates of all three programs experience a high level of employment due to a shortage of individuals practicing in these professions. The two-year Associate's Degree Radiologic Technology program educates students to become highly trained specialists with a full understanding of the diagnostic uses of radiation. Program graduates are eligible for the national registry examination and licensure by the New York state Department of Health. Diagnostic Medical Sonography and Echocardiography are one-year certificate programs which prepare students for careers as registered sonographers. Both programs are approved through the New York State Education Department and accredited by the Joint Review Committee on Diagnostic Medical Sonography. Graduates of these programs are eligible to participate in the national certification examination sponsored by the American Registry of Diagnostic Medical Sonography.

Emergency Medical Technician-Paramedic, a highly skilled professional provider who practices the art and science of out-of-hospital medicine in conjunction with medical direction. Through performance of assessments and providing medical care, their goal is to prevent and reduce mortality and morbidity due to illness and injury. EMT-Ps recognize that they are an essential component of the continuum of care and serve as linkages among health resources. EMT-Ps are responsible and accountable to medical direction, the public, and their peers. This A.A.S. degree was designed to wrap around the 15-course series that leads to the EMT-P certificate. The Emergency Medical Technician-Paramedic program is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP).

Mortuary Science, which educates graduates as contemporary funeral directors capable of performing current caretaking and managerial roles. Successful completion of the Mortuary Science major entitles the student to sit for the National Board Examination and/or a State Board. The Mortuary Science major is approved and registered with the New York State Department of Health and accredited by the American Board of Funeral Service Education.

Nursing, a program designed to educate students to be competent health care providers in the nursing setting, offers a conceptual approach to nursing theory with courses that involve the student in lecture and independent learning experiences. The clinical aspects of this program include closely correlated theory and practice in selected cooperating agencies, including area hospitals, extended-care settings and other health care facilities. The Nursing program is accredited by the National League of Nursing Accrediting Commission. Nursing graduates earn an Associate in Applied Science degree and are eligible to sit for the New York State Licensing Examination for Registered Nurses.