October Good News: Part 1

Governor Sisolak overseeing students training in an ambulance.
Hannah Alfaro

Health Science Center Welcomes Visitors 

The William N. Pennington Health Science Center saw two exciting visitors this month, and students and faculty were able to show their love for their programs and knowledge in the field.

Emergency Medical Services (EMS) students enrolled in EMS 200 had a chance to demonstrate their hands-on skills to Nevada Governor Steve Sisolak on Monday, Sept. 19 when he dropped in at the Health Science Center. College leaders and administrators also met with the Governor, as did faculty representing the Advanced Manufacturing program to discuss workforce development opportunities with industry partners.

These students are already employed as local or regional firefighters, and are now enrolled in the EMS course to learn additional skills as paramedics. During the Governor’s tour of the building, instructor Cass Fox and student Greig Jameson, representing Truckee Meadows Fire, were ensconced in an ambulance simulator with three others, showing off the skills they’ve learned so far. “We’ve got real-live training when we’re here, so when we go to the field, it’s a seamless transition,” said Jameson.

Fox added, “We prepare them for the field with everything. This is what an ambulance looks like, and… [from here] they’ve already sat at that bench seat with a patient on the stretcher. I’ve been at numerous medical schools, and this is something that is unique to this department.”

Following the tour, a casual roundtable discussion featured the importance of community colleges to those who wish to pursue a technical education, as well as TMCC’s active community partnerships in the field of Advanced Manufacturing.

Similarly, the Health Science Center welcomed Rear Admiral Bruce Gillingham on Thursday, Sept. 29 as part of Reno-Carson Navy Week. As the surgeon general of the Navy, N093/chief, Bureau of Medicine and Surgery, Rear Admiral Gillingham met with students and staff studying and working in the health sciences field to share how their efforts can directly contribute to Navy initiatives.

During his visit, Rear Admiral Gillingham had lunch with leadership, students, and representatives from veterans programs, where they were able to discuss and showcase the services the College offers to our veteran students and staff, as well as speak about the importance of STEM initiatives and programs offered here.

“We are so thrilled to be here,” Rear Admiral Gillingham said. “This is an opportunity for us to show the community what the Navy does, and also to thank you for your support. Throughout my career, the support of the American population has been terrific, and we really appreciate that. It’s great we can be supportive of our veterans here, and be that bridge to their next career and the next step in their life.”

After “Subs with the Admiral,” Rear Admiral Gillingham had the chance to tour the Health Science Center facilities to take a look at the technology and classrooms that contribute to the quality education of our students and veterans.

Instructor Candace Garlock Honored with Award for Sculpture Series

Last month, the inaugural Reno Tahoe International Art Show held an exciting event for local artists to show their work and celebrate their achievements, and Visual Arts Professor Candace Garlock was awarded Excellence in Fine Art in Sculpture & 3-D Artworks for a series of sculptures inspired by living with chronic illness.

Garlock has been an instructor at TMCC since 2005, and has taught a wide variety of classes including Printmaking, Visual Foundation, and Ceramics. While her work typically involves multi-media aspects, she decided to submit this series–“Body/Body”–because of the strength and complexity behind its concept.

Speaking on the process of creating these sculptures, Garlock notes on her blog that, “In the years after diagnosis, I began to research chronic illnesses and how they are often marginalized, contested and unrecognized in society. In this work, I explore the vulnerability of this autoimmune disease and the interconnectedness between the nervous system and immune system, beginning to find beauty within the acceptance of pain.”

Due to being recognized for this award, as well as her previous work with the school, Garlock was asked to sit on the board for the Tuscarora Pottery School, a retreat and summer pottery school established in 1966 to provide an introduction to ceramics for inexperienced students, and a place for more seasoned practitioners to expand their skills.

“It was a little nerve-wracking, submitting these pieces and then accepting the award,” Garlock noted. “But I want to show students that no matter how nervous they are, they need to take the chance to share their artwork to see what happens.”

Students Celebrate Completing Intensive Tesla Program

Students in our Tesla Manufacturing Development Program were able to celebrate their achievements last month during a recognition ceremony that concluded with 46 certificates of completion awarded.

A group of students holding certificates.

46 students received a certificate of completion.

“Our partnership is best embodied by our graduates!” Kreg Mebust, interim dean for the Technical Sciences Division, said. “46 young adults representing the finest and brightest within our state placed their hopes and dreams with Tesla and TMCC. As the first cohort to successfully complete the pilot Manufacturing Development Program, they demonstrated to each other a fearless attitude towards risk and doubled down to a commitment to our environmental sustainability and lifelong learning. On behalf of TMCC, our partnership with Tesla is grounded with a commitment to equal access and student success.”

The Manufacturing Development Program is designed to provide graduating high school seniors with the financial resources, coursework and experience they need to start a successful manufacturing career at Tesla.  For four weeks, students took classes at the Pennington Applied Technology Center, where they learned the necessary skills to enter the Tesla workforce all while getting paid.

“This program was very fun, interesting, and difficult,” Omar Chavez, a recent graduate of the program, said. “Although I struggled at the beginning, the instructors were helpful and insightful, which made me realize this was the right program for me.”

After completion of the program, students can apply their new skills straight away as a Production Associate at the Tesla Gigafactory.