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College of Nursing Academic Service Learning Expands to Love Towers

The College of Nursing Academic Service Learning (ASL) program currently collaborates with 54 community partners in Knoxville and surrounding areas. It is projected that students will contribute 16,000 hours of service this year through our ASL program.

Guy B. Love Towers is one of the newest partners for the ASL program. Love Towers is a high-rise property with two seven-story apartment buildings housing disabled and near-elderly individuals. The building provides a safe, comfortable community for seniors and disabled, and features social activities and special events for a vibrant lifestyle.

“The College of Nursing is excited to partner with Love Towers residents, directors, and KCDC to provide health screenings and activities for the community,” said Nan Gaylord, associate dean of practice and global affairs for the college. “We are excited to provide a masked and socially distanced touchpoint for residents to talk with student nurses and participate in activities outdoors. We hope this program will help to advance future partnerships.”

The ASL program is course-based experiential learning that engages students in meaningful and relevant service with a community partner while using ongoing reflection to draw connections between the service and course content. The goal of the service-learning requirement is for students to gain a deeper understanding of what it means to care for others and learn a variety of behaviors—such as communication, leadership, professionalism, safe practice, and critical reasoning—that are critical to a career in nursing. It also provides opportunities for some vital hands-on experience.

“I am very excited that UT College of Nursing has chosen to partnership with Guy B. Love Towers. This is a long term commitment that will prove to be beneficial to our elderly and disabled residents at Love Towers” said Steve Ellis, senior asset manager for Love Towers. “The student nurses have gotten off to a great start and our residents are enjoying the attention.”

The students will be on the Love Towers campus on each Wednesday. Students will take time out of their day to participate in socially distanced group activities, blood pressure checks, and other community building activities with the residents.

“The College of Nursing is pleased to see the positive impact our students are having on our neighbors at Love Towers.  During such a challenging time due to COVID, our students are utilizing Academic Service-Learning to make a critical difference in the Knoxville community by demonstrating caring and professional behaviors,” said Karen Messing, director of undergraduate programs.  “We look forward to a long future relationship with our friends at Guy B. Love Towers.”

 

Contact:

Kara Clark (865-974-9498, kmclark2@utk.edu)