By Lori Bredemeyer, Copy Editor
Steve Rowlands can find only one word to describe how he feels: excited.
Rowlands, director of the Counseling Center, and the counseling staff soon will move their offices to the basement of McKinzie Hall. Rowlands said the lower level currently is being renovated.
“We’re very excited about it,” he said. “Everybody thinks the basement of McKinzie’s kind of a dungeon. I think they’re going to be really impressed with how it’s going to look; it’ll be a warm, comfortable setting.”
As the Counseling Center moves downstairs, the Medical Clinic will begin moving into the vacated offices, so that the Medical Clinic will occupy the entire east ground floor of McKinzie.
Dr. Tony Rector, director of the medical clinic, said he hopes to have everything moved and organized before school starts in August.
“We’ll have more exam rooms; more exam rooms means better flow; better flow means increased volume” of students served, Rector said.
Other changes for the Medical Clinic occurred early in the semester when new staff members were hired. Rector said a registered nurse, Ranee Knox, and two nurse practitioners, Judy Chant and Dr. Jan Noles, are helping treat the large number of students cared for by the clinic. Chant and Noles are able to examine patients and write prescriptions.
“The real situation was people needed that level of care, and it was a bottleneck effect; there was only so much of my time to go around,” Rector said. “This is really a very good step.”
He said one of the clinic’s nurses resigned in early fall, and he had been looking to replace that position and add a nurse practitioner. The three new staff members each work part time, so the work is split between them, and the clinic will extend its hours to 6 p.m. on Monday and Thursday to accommodate their schedules and be open later for students.
He said he was lucky to be able to add the three to the clinic.
“My criteria was quality references as far as skills and a focus on Christian principles,” Rector said. “They’re good folks. I think students will really like them-they’re a good fit.”
Rowlands said the counseling center will probably not add any new staff members in the near future, but there will be more interns to counsel students. The new location will have more room for offices and exam rooms, and a waiting room and resource room will be added.
“It’s going to be a very warm, professional, tranquil setting,” he said. “Confidentiality probably will be increased; there’s a lot of traffic now just because of the Medical Clinic.”
He also said his current staff is looking forward to the new location.
“I think everyone I know is excited about the move and having new office space for them,” he said. “It’s going to be a positive change for us. I can’t wait.”