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August 15, 2014
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Letter: State-of-the-art training facilities needed for health sciences at Umpqua Community College

Support UCC’s HNS project

I’m a disabled veteran who received an opportunity to return to school for retraining. I started at Umpqua Community College in 1995, at age 39, with some college experience in California. I was required to take science classes in my program of study. Some of the classrooms were adequate for lectures, but chemistry, biology and physics labs were severely outdated and limited in space for students attempting to complete related assignments. This is still a problem 19 years later.

I support the Health, Nursing and Science project for these reasons:

The biggest challenge we face for meeting student needs is 45-year-old facilities that don’t meet the high-tech requirements of today’s health care.

UCC is seeking $8.5 million for a 36,000-square-foot state-of-the-art space dedicated to health and science programs. These funds would be combined with $8.5 million from the state to create a Health, Nursing & Science center. This facility would include a nursing skills lab, dental lab, chemistry and biology labs with a prep room, anatomy and physiology lab, physics and geology lab, four classrooms, faculty offices, two conference rooms and two workrooms, all necessary for UCC’s continued success.

If Douglas County takes no action, we’re letting the $8.5 million in state funding go to another community college in Oregon.

Other factors:

The Oregon Employment Department projects more than 500 job openings in Douglas County through the 2012-2022 years. Those jobs would require associate degrees/training in the health and science-related programs that are currently offered at UCC. Overall, more than 1300 new and replacement jobs in the health care fields will be needed in Douglas County by 2020.

As an alumnus of UCC who has completed two Associate of Applied Science degrees, I strongly encourage everyone in Douglas County to support this project.

Jesse Morrow


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The News-Review Updated Aug 25, 2014 09:12AM Published Aug 15, 2014 11:18AM Copyright 2014 The News-Review. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.