Nursing Partnering with Early Youth Eyecare (E.Y.E.) and Kirby Puckett Eye Mobile

Nursing students provide vision screening for children

The Nursing program at Inver Hills Community College is partnering with the Early Youth Eyecare (E.Y.E.) Community Initiative and the Kirby Puckett Eye Mobile. Both vision-health programs are operated by Phillips Eye Institute, a campus of Abbott Northwestern Hospital.

“This partnership offers a great clinical opportunity for our first-semester nursing students,” said Christopher Metsgar, Inver Hills dean of allied health. “Our students are working with the nonprofit to provide vision screening for children in Minneapolis and St. Paul public schools.”

Dean Metsgar added that the clinical experience gives Inver nursing students the chance to interact with the pediatric population in a controlled environment.

“This partnership allows our students to see the challenges some children face in accessing needed heath care in the form of glasses or even vision screening,” he said.

Cheryle Atkin serves as community programs supervisor for Early Youth Eyecare (E.Y.E.) and the Kirby Puckett Eye Mobile. Cheryle reported that this semester’s Inver nursing students recently completed their training with the programs.

“The E.Y.E. Community Initiative’s partnership with Inver Hills is critical to the program’s goal to remove vision problems as a roadblock to learning and success,” Cheryle said. “The nursing students are extremely enthusiastic, intelligent, and eager to have an impact on the health of the children in our community.  We truly appreciate the nursing students’ contributions while in the schools with us.”

About the Early Youth Eyecare (E.Y.E.) Community Initiative¹

Helping children see the possibilities

The Early Youth Eyecare (E.Y.E.) Community Initiative of Phillips Eye Institute—a campus of Abbott Northwestern Hospital, provides vision screenings and subsequent treatment services to children in Minneapolis and St. Paul Public Schools.

Vision screening is an efficient and economical method for detecting unknown vision problems. Children are not always aware that they have a vision problem. Routine screening helps to remove poor vision as a roadblock to school performance and success in other areas of daily life.

In addition to providing vision screening services for children in kindergarten, first, third, fifth and seventh grades, E.Y.E. works with families to identify and remove barriers to receiving treatment. This includes coordinating and funding vision care, along with providing interpreters and transportation for vision care needs for students in pre-kindergarten through the start of ninth grade.

The program serves more than 27,000 students annually.


About the Kirby Puckett Eye Mobile²

The Kirby Puckett Eye Mobile is a mobile eye clinic owned and operated by Phillips Eye Institute—a campus of Abbott Northwestern Hospital.

With two fully-equipped exam rooms and an optical shop on board, the eye mobile is an eye doctor’s office on wheels. The eye mobile and its team of eye care professionals travel to Minneapolis and St. Paul Public Schools to provide eye exams for children in need who have been screened by our Early Youth Eyecare Community  Initiative.

The Kirby Puckett Eye Mobile also provides vision screening services for children and adults at community or school events. The eye mobile is named after the late Kirby Puckett, who was an advocate for eye health awareness and a Minnesota Twins center fielder.


More about Nursing at Inver Hills…

Nursing is an exceptionally rewarding career where you can make a real difference in people’s lives. Our graduates exceed the national NCLEX-RN pass rate and go on to enjoy great job security as registered nurses (RNs) in this high-demand field. The Minnesota Alliance for Nursing Education (MANE) process admits you to both the Metropolitan State University B.S.N. and Inver Hills A.S. in Nursing programs.

Associate of Science (A.S.) in Nursing: Traditional Track: 75 credits

Nursing program philosophy: The core of the Inver Hills MANE Nursing program belief system is to provide a quality student-centered education which promotes life-long learning. Faculty believes in facilitating an intellectual learning environment through the use of evidence based practice, innovative teaching strategies, and role modeling.

Students and faculty advocate for the community; understanding the diverse needs of the people we serve. We believe health is a dynamic process that differentiates individually and collectively. We believe nursing uses integrative knowledge and caring that requires a holistic approach embracing the dignity and strength of each individual.

As a student in this A.S. degree program, you will complete the Nursing curriculum (35 credits) and general education coursework (40 credits) for a credit total of 75.

Why study Nursing at Inver Hills?

The numbers tell the story.

Our student success is self-evident. Inver Hills nursing graduates are primed for success, achieving nearly 5 percent higher NCLEX-RN pass rates than the national average. More than 90 percent of our graduates find employment as RNs within one year of earning their A.S. degrees.

We are innovators in the nursing field.

Inver Hills faculty and staff played a major role in developing the Minnesota Alliance for Nursing Education (MANE) curriculum. As a transformative approach to nursing education, MANE encourages a deep understanding of key nursing concepts while addressing the changing healthcare environment.

Accelerate your registered nursing career.

Advanced standing is offered to qualified licensed practical nurses (LPNs) interested in the MANE curriculum, which is designed to propel you toward graduating with your baccalaureate degree within four years.

Be confident and surefooted on your nursing journey.

Many students enroll at Inver Hills and complete prerequisite courses before applying to the Nursing program, which is accredited by the Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing (ACEN) and approved by the Minnesota Board of Nursing.

Nurses make a genuine difference

Nurses give medicine a human face. They truly care about their patients. They go above and beyond to make sure their patients feel safe and secure during an often very difficult and frightening time in their lives. Nurses are kindness personified in the healthcare system.

You can enter the field in more than one way.

You can earn a Nursing Assistant certificate by completing one 5-credit course. You’ll get the training you need to enter the healthcare field as a nursing assistant or home health aide, and also be prepared to take the state registry exam for certification. The A.S. in Nursing Traditional Track and A.S. in Nursing Mobility–LPN are 75-credit degrees that prepare you for a fulfilling career as a professional registered nurse.

Nurses are in huge demand.

The ongoing nursing shortage brings job security and great wages to this career path. RNs in the seven-county, Twin Cities metro area earn a median wage approaching $43 an hour. Top earners make nearly $50 an hour. Nurses with advanced degrees make even more: nurse anesthetists in Minnesota earn a median wage topping $100 an hour.

Learn more about Nursing at Inver Hills by contacting:

Nursing Department

Admissions Team
College Center

¹ SOURCE: Early Youth Eyecare (E.Y.E.) Community Initiative
² SOURCE: Kirby Puckett Eye Mobile

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