The School of Nursing
A team of faculty and students from the School of Nursing assisted with recent on-campus COVID-19 tests for faculty and staff.
As part of a new agreement with the Aiken Regional Medical Centers, the university will provide courtesy tests throughout the summer.
This effort aids UofSC Aiken in mitigating the coronavirus on the university campus as the hospital will provide periodic testing and analysis. It is just one of several steps the university has taken to prepare for students’ return to campus.
For more on the partnership, click here.
“UofSC Aiken and the Aiken Regional Medical Centers both agree that helping students and the constituents of the UofSC Aiken campus to remain safe and healthy is a priority, This partnership demonstrates the spirit of community service at the heart of Aiken Regional Medical Centers' mission as well as the humanitarianism and medical expertise provided during the COVID-19 pandemic."
- Memorandum of Understanding signed by Dr. Sandra Jordan, chancellor, and Jim O’Loughlin, CEO of Aiken Regional Medical Centers
Pacesetters & Orientation Team
The 2020 Pacesetters and orientation team have been engaged all summer with incoming first-year and transfer students, ensuring their first impressions and interactions with the university are inviting, engaging, and informative. While they originally planned to conduct traditional in-person orientation sessions, they quickly had to adapt their approach due to COVID-19 restrictions.
“They turned three dynamic in-person programs into interactive virtual programs with only about six weeks’ notice. They have been absolutely terrific all summer.”
- Ahmed Samaha, vice chancellor for student affairs
Keith Pierce and his crew in instructional services work behind the scenes to ensure we are set and ready for engaging instruction, archiving historical university events and activities, or preparing numerous video productions, including those needed for virtual orientation sessions this summer and for the UofSC Aiken Archimedes Dialogue Project.Dr. Mark Hollingsworth, dean of the College of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences, kicked off the Pacer Graduation Parade while playing the bagpipes.
“Keith Pierce and his team have been nothing short of heroic in their efforts to support the mission of the English Department through their expertise with video filming and editing. The Archimedes Dialogue series, which will soon be available through the Writing Center, features interviews with visiting writers for the Oswald Distinguished Writers Series. The interviews are professional in quality, really like something you’d see on PBS or hear on NPR. Kudos, Keith!”
- Dr. Andrew Geyer, chair, UofSC Aiken English Department
Dr. Mark Hollingsworth, dean of the College of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences, kicked off the Pacer Graduation Parade while playing the bagpipes.
He composed the Pacer March, which is often played for special events on campus.
“Dr. Hollingsworth’s Pacer March was the perfect way to start the parade. It helped make the event festive and gave it a unique flair.”
- Mary Driscoll, vice chancellor for advancement and external affairs
UofSC Aiken Admissions Team
The Pacer Admissions team works day and night (and weekends) to enroll new students at UofSC Aiken.
The last several months have presented everyone with new challenges. The admissions team has met those challenges head-on. In addition to creating a brand new virtual tour, they transitioned to online campus visits. They implemented a very successful communication campaign to engage potential students. Most notably, they coordinated two separate enrollment “deposit-a-thons.” The team worked until midnight on both May 1 and June 1 to help students beat the deadlines to enroll as new Pacers.
The admissions team includes the professionals included here https://www.usca.edu/admissions/find-your-counselor.
Ashley Brittain, Class of '08, is a professor in the School of Nursing. She and her family – including two young sons – serve as a foster family in Aiken County. Since October of last year, the Brittains have opened their home to five children.
During the period of modified operations, Kelly Schepens, director of student programs at the Ruth Patrick Science Education Center, has ensured all animals in the center are fed and cared for properly.
John Hutchens, director of special programs at Ruth Patrick Science Education Center, quickly adapted his programs to provide engaging learning opportunities even during a pandemic.
Upon hearing of the public schools' closures, John immediately started working on some ideas to continue enriching K-12 students' educational experiences by providing new approaches to engaging them.
Dr. Jamie Edwards, director of distance learning, helped faculty quickly transition to remote delivery methods when the coronavirus forced the university to modify its operations.
Antauwn Wade, a fine arts major from Varnville, SC, is on a mission to encourage his community, in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic and recent tornadoes in his area. He's going all over his community, painting angels in storefronts and just about anywhere he can.
"If you aren't prepared to be a nurse after leaving USC Aiken, then you didn't pay attention," said Paul McDaniel. He completed his degree program this semester and has been working in a local hospital for the last few months, caring for patients, some with the coronavirus.
Ali Thompson, Class of '18, is working some very long hours at Augusta University Medical Center, taking care of patients, including those with COVID-19. She says the USC Aiken nursing program set her up for success in this high stress, very demanding but extremely rewarding career.
USC Aiken alumna, Alexis Zimmerman, is sharing the university's message of H.O.P.E. as she takes the Shepeard Community Blood Center's mobile unit on the road, this time to get a donation of blood from Sandy Talbott, the coordinator for parent and family relations.
USC Aiken alumnus, Forrest Ayers, recently volunteered to go to New York to help healthcare professionals take care of COVID-19 patients. The Aiken native graduated from the USC Aiken School of Nursing in December 2017.
We remember the life, sacrifice, and dedication of Joshua Bush, a first-semester nursing student who bravely cared for COVID-19 patients in a local healthcare facility. Sadly, Joshua passed away Friday, April 17, from complications related to the virus.
Hanna Hall is a junior nursing major currently working as a patient care technician at Aiken Regional Medical Centers.
"The nursing program has instilled in me a solid base in nursing fundamentals. I have been able to take practices learned throughout the program into the healthcare field while caring for patients, not just COVID-19 patients," Hall said.
Congratulations to Dr. Drew Geyer, chair of the English department, upon his induction to the South Carolina Academy of Authors Literary Hall of Fame. This honor places him in the same category as other prominent South Carolina writers such as Pat Conroy, Nikky Finney, and James Dickey.