By: Bill Bangert
University of Cincinnati College of Nursing dedicated the new UC Health iCoN Innovation Space on Monday, Jan. 30, at Procter Hall on UC’s medical campus. The development of this 7,200 square foot "open workspace of the future” on the building’s second floor was supported by a $1.2 million gift from UC Health.
"UC Health and the UC College of Nursing already partner in many meaningful ways, including through our dedicated education unit for nursing students at UC Medical Center, and through collaborative efforts around the use of telehealth technology in the health care setting,” said Richard Lofgren, MD, president and CEO of UC Health. "We’re proud to have supported the creation of innovative space within the college that will enhance teaching and research and augment the great work happening here in support of advancing the practice of nursing.”
The redesigned space features open office areas for about 40 faculty and staff, with embedded technology allowing for greater mobility across the space. The open workspace serves as a meeting place for UC and UC Health teams to gather and plan the educational preparation of nursing students and serves as a think tank for future models of professional practice. It is the only open workspace for faculty at UC.
"Our new space eliminates the previous office silos, encouraging collaboration between faculty and staff,” said Greer Glazer, PhD, dean of the College of Nursing.
"It accounts for our faculty and staff needs and enables multi-disciplinary team work. This innovative work space supports our goal of ‘Transform our environment and culture to reflect the core values, strategic priorities and norms of the College of Nursing’ and is one more example of why the UC College of Nursing is in the top four percent of all nursing schools across the country.”
"It takes a strong leader to start an iPad initiative and to transform how nurses are working with other health care professionals, and how to see that vision of how faculty can work in a different way than they have worked for decades," said Peter Landren, interim senior vice president for academic affairs and interim provost for UC. "I think you have something great in store for the College of Nursing."
Construction of the redesigned space took about two years and it was worth the wait for Christine Colella, professor of clinical nursing and director of master’s specialties in the College of Nursing.
"It's not the office you're in, it's the people you're with, and that's the biggest, most wonderful thing about being in this space," Colella said. "This really gives you an opportunity for spontaneous collaboration. You walk by people, you overhear things and you get involved that way."
The College of Nursing’s "iCoN Initiative” began in 2011 and was designed to transform the delivery of nursing education in the classroom, simulation laboratory and clinical settings.
This initiative—through immersive training programs, classroom and simulation space enhancements and student engagement—has focused on creatively leveraging iPad as a vehicle for teaching and learning. The program led to the College of Nursing receiving a two-year designation as an Apple Distinguished Program for the 2014-2016 academic years, which was recently renewed for 2016-2018.