The Nipissing University Bachelor of Science in Nursing Community Health Clinical Practicum Placement provides an invaluable opportunity for third year nursing students to work collaboratively to perform a community assessment, and develop a meaningful project that will enhance the health of a community. Two such students currently engaged in completing their community placement, Lori Sneddon of Listowel, and Kelley Nedza of Grand Bend, are presently working at the Gateway Centre of Excellence in Rural Health located in Goderich, Ontario.
Under the direction of Gwen Devereaux R.N., students Sneddon and Nedza have chosen to assess the gaps in programming for Huron County Seniors. They are specifically researching existing programming developed to combat loneliness and social isolation among this vulnerable population. “It is so enjoyable working with these nurses and I am re-energized by their enthusiasm for our profession! At Gateway we continue to assist students wishing to further their professional careers in health care and this project assists also in making aging in Huron County better. A win- win for all of us!” said Devereaux.
After introducing the two students to current programming and initiatives at Goderich Place and the Harbour Hill Retirement Community, the students expressed amazement at the volume of current resources provided. Nedza stated “being here has broadened my knowledge of community rural health and a different specialty of nursing.” Sneddon stated, "I am impressed with how Gateway is creating initiatives and projects to better the rural communities. I didn't realize that there were so many areas of nursing incorporated into the community and I am proud to be a part of it."
In addition to this twelve week long practicum placement at Gateway, Sneddon currently works full time as a Mental Health Nurse (RPN) at Homewood Health Centre in Guelph, and Nedza is working as a R.P.N. at LHSC and Clinton Hospital.
Both students look forward to completing their work in partnership with Gateway long after the conclusion of their clinical experience.