Kettering College is marking its 50th anniversary and the spirit of innovation that led to its founding is as strong as ever.

“Our passion for innovation and excellence inspires us to not only provide a transformational experience for our students, but to focus on how we deliver this unique experience to them,” says President Nate Brandstater.

The college and its owner, Kettering Medical Center, were founded by Eugene W. Kettering, son of famed inventor Charles F. Kettering, and his wife, Virginia W. Kettering. They donated 35 acres of family property for the medical center and a future college. In 1967, more than 100 students enrolled as the college’s first freshman class. Today Kettering, chartered by the Seventh-day Adventist Church, has more than 700 students pursuing degrees in an array of health-care focused fields from nursing to occupational therapy.

“Health care and education are changing and Kettering College is committed to being a leader in those fields, in the transformation of a student’s experience,” Brandstater says.

Kettering’s innovative approach starts with its Interprofessional Education Simulation Center, a state-of-the art health-care training facility that integrates various types of simulations with medical manikins to improve patient safety by replicating diverse scenarios. The simulation center was started to enhance inter-professional education and collaboration of all divisions within the college. The center incorporates the use of high-fidelity simulation and advanced technology in the replication of real-life patient situations aligned with best practices in the field.

Another aspect of Kettering’s innovative approach is its emphasis on interdepartmental learning, where students from different disciplines come together and work together as they would in a real hospital.

It culminates in an annual one-day mock disaster drill where students come together to treat students with mock injuries.

“The multidisciplinary approach mirrors real-life experience and is a more effective way for students to learn,” says Donna Moore, IPE Simulation Center director. “The annual mass disaster simulation event is a great exercise for students to learn to communicate with each other in an intense patient-care setting.”

Kettering also has implemented “flipped classrooms” a pedagogical model where the typical lecture model is reversed and students lead discussions under the guidance of instructors.

These and other innovations have had a big impact on, for example, student pass rates for the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses.

Last year Kettering College students ranked 15th out of 92 nursing programs in Ohio, up from 44th the prior year, says Jessica Beans, Kettering’s director of marketing.

Another way Kettering is being innovative is by making its programs more affordable through a partnership with the Kettering Health Network.

This fall, a group of 10 Kettering College students will take part in a pilot program to connect them to opportunities within Kettering Health Network hospital facilities while attending college.

These students will get relevant health-care experience while benefitting from the relationship Kettering College has with Kettering Health Network. As Kettering Health Network employees they are eligible for a 30 percent tuition discount from Kettering College and additional tuition assistance.

“When these students graduate, they will have a great degree and experience—best of all they will be on track to graduate with zero debt,” says Brandstater.



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