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For immediate release — April 29, 2008

(DALLAS) — Big Brother is watching — at El Centro College! 

No, it's not 1984 and George Orwell isn't here. However, El Centro College students who are enrolled in allied health or nursing fields know that cameras in new high-tech classrooms are recording their patient care, tracking the questions they ask and watching procedures — all with teaching and assessment in mind.

These new high-tech labs — along with classrooms that offer the capability to record lectures, rebroadcast them or create podcasts — are making health care classes state-of-the-art in El Centro's new Center for Allied Health and Nursing, located in the newly remodeled Paramount Building, 301 N. Market in the West End, Dallas.

The new center is the highlight of grand opening ceremonies on Thursday, May 1, from 2 to 4 p.m. Guests can take tours, see the high-tech settings and learn more about advances in nursing and allied health education from students who likely will become their future health care providers. The event also will include a reception for the college's new president, Dr. Paul McCarthy, who began his tenure in February. Dallas County Community College District and El Centro officials will participate, and ECC faculty and students will conduct the tours.

"Patients" (or high-tech mannequins) in the labs test students, too, when faculty members (from screened locations) change the mannequins' respiration, pulse or other vital functions to watch how students care for them, ask questions and follow proper medical procedures. The taped activities are used for instruction, review and assessment by faculty with students so that they can learn as they work in a simulated setting — from a doctor's office to a hospital ER to a hospital floor.

For more details, see our fact sheets, featuring:

For more information, contact Sondra Flemming, ECC vice president of health and legal studies/workforce and continuing education, at (214) 860-2141.

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Press contact: Ann Hatch