Photo of Rebekah Hammond and male

Brother helps spark interest in medical field

Photo of Rebekah Hammond, class of 2020.

Rebekah Hammond, class of 2020.

My name is Rebekah Hammond, I am currently a sophomore in the class of BSDMS 2020. I have a large family and was home-schooled through high school. I figured out what I wanted to be a part of the medical field in some way when I was a teenager. I had a brother that was an X-ray tech and he told me all about how rewarding it was to be in the medical field, so I knew right away it was something I would be passionate about.

I shadowed him in high school and decided to check out the ultrasound unit there. I was so intrigued I decided to pursue sonography as soon as I graduated high school. I took some general education courses while working for a few years and saw that Bellin College had a new diagnostic sonography program. I toured the college and found out more about the program. I thought that it was the perfect fit because of all the unique aspects it had to offer.

Rebekah Hammond, class of 2020.

Rebekah Hammond, class of 2020.

Since I started this program I have not stopped learning from my instructors and peers. I love the fact it is a smaller College, that I will have a bachelor’s degree and be board certified when I graduate. Being the second class ever in the ultrasound program here and experiencing the quality and time that is put into it, it is very exciting to know that more people will have the opportunity to be a part of such a great program.

Rebekah Hammond

BSDMS 2020

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Donor scholarships made education possible for alumna Megan Falk

While she was a Bellin College student, Falk encountered some heartbreaking challenges. Her brother was diagnosed with a rare form of cancer, which devastated her and her family. She was learning how to be a nurse during the day and all of her free time after class and on the weekends was spent at his bedside in the hospital or working. She saw care up close and personal, via the nurses who cared for her brother. At the same time, she was gaining empathy and understanding for how difficult these situations can be—something that would help her care for her future patients
and their families.

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Volunteers work at Feed My Starving Children Oct. 3, 2018.

Students, families and faculty volunteer with Feed My Starving Children

Students work at Feed My Starving Children Oct. 3, 2018.

Students work at Feed My Starving Children Oct. 3, 2018.

A group of Bellin College faculty, family and students from the Medical Imaging programs volunteered at Feed My Starving Children on Wednesday, Oct. 3, 2018. It was the third annual Feed My Starving Children Community Event for the College. Feed My Starving Children is a nonprofit organization that provides nutritionally complete meals specifically formulated for malnourished children. They have partners around the world who deliver the meals. The meals are packed by volunteers for those who are in the most need. During their meal-packing experience, Bellin College volunteers helped pack 330 boxes, a total of 71,280 meals! They helped pack enough meals to feed 195 children for a year in just an hour and a half.  Outstanding job!

Students work at Feed My Starving Children Oct. 3, 2018.

Volunteers work at Feed My Starving Children Oct. 3, 2018.

Volunteers work at Feed My Starving Children Oct. 3, 2018.

Volunteers work at Feed My Starving Children Oct. 3, 2018.

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Instructor and therapist student working on proper technique with a female patient.

Bellin College and Evidence in Motion to launch two new Post-Graduate Physical Therapy Programs

Bellin College in collaboration with Evidence in Motion (EIM) will begin offering an Orthopaedic Manual Physical Therapy (OMPT) Fellowship Program and a Doctorate of Science in Physical Therapy (DScPT). The Fellowship is set to begin January 2019 with the Doctorate of Physical Therapy following in early spring 2019.

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Ultrasound: Much more than looking at babies

Ultrasound: The medical imaging modality that looks at babies all day. Right? Most people think of ultrasound and they think of babies. This is far from the truth. Sonographers look at every organ from your head to your toe, blood vessels, and even muscles. Graduates from Bellin College learn abdominal, vascular, and obstetric/gynecological techniques and can take their registry boards in each specialty. Regardless of the types of ultrasounds done, sonographers around the world are facing the same issues: work-related injuries.

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Burkina Faso meets Bellin College

Daouda Zoure

Daouda Zoure

Daouda Zoure isn’t your average Wisconsinite. He came to Wisconsin by way of Burkina Faso, a country just southeast to Ivory Coast. He and his two brothers moved to the U.S. to live with their father in 2012, following the death of their mother. Zoure’s father lived in the U.S. for many years, and welcomed Zoure and his two brothers to Madison.

“My mom passed away during childbirth,” Zoure said. “My mother meant the world to me and, when I lost her, it was devastating. I miss her every day.”

In Burkina Faso, Zoure’s mother owned a restaurant called Maman, which means mom in French. He learned to cook from his mother and attributes his love of cooking to all of the special times they spent cooking together. At least once per year, Zoure and his brothers cook food and distribute it to the homeless living near Capitol square in Madison.

“My mother always thought I was too nice and she wanted me to be a doctor or work in another healthcare role,” said Zoure. “She thought a lot of people could benefit from my kindness, which is partly why I chose to go into nursing.”

Zoure attended Madison Area Technical College for two years and then transferred to UW-Eau Claire to complete his Bachelor of Science in human biology with honors. With his move came an adjustment to the cold weather and a few language challenges.

Daouda Zoure will run his first marathon in October 2018 in Niagara Falls.

Daouda Zoure will run his first marathon in October 2018 in Niagara Falls.

“When I started school at MATC, I wrote all of my papers in French, and then translated them to English with a dictionary,” said Zoure. “I learned some English by watching my favorite TV show, ‘The Big Bang Theory.’ I still enjoy it to this day, but I don’t need the subtitles.”

Following his graduation from UW-Eau Claire in 2016, he applied to the 15-month program at Bellin College and was accepted.  He will graduate with a Bachelor of Science in nursing in October, and has made the Dean’s List again this past summer. After graduation, Zoure will start his job as a nurse extern in orthopedics and neurology at Bellin Hospital in Green Bay.

He is very close to his two brothers who are also attending college in Wisconsin. One brother is attending UW-Milwaukee to study computer science and business, and the other attends UW-Whitewater to study political science/diplomacy and international business. Zoure’s father owns a small delivery business called Burkina Express, which delivers loads across the U.S.

Daouda Zoure enjoys to cook.

Daouda Zoure enjoys to cook.

In his free time, he enjoys cooking traditional dishes from Burkina Faso and running. His favorite meals are fried plantain and babenda, which is a mix of spinach, kale, swiss chard, mustard greens, peanut and dried fish. He is also training for his first full marathon, which is Oct. 14 in Niagara Falls.

“After working for a few years, I plan to continue my education at Bellin College as a student in the family nurse practitioner program,” said Zoure. “I’d like to someday join Doctors Without Borders and work for an organization like the Peace Corps, in which I can provide care to all who need it…where they need it.”

Zoure has plans for one other healthcare endeavor. He plans to build a clinic in Burkina Faso called Maman, in memory of his mother, to serve all women who face a high-risk pregnancy.

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gillian with water filter

Bellin College Class of 1968 steps up with generous gift in celebration of their 50th Reunion

A call for water filter and clean stove donations for an upcoming mission trip to Guatemala went out in the spring issue of the Bellin Forward, and the class of 1968 generously answered.

“A classmate read the article about the Guatemala mission work by the students in the Bellin Forward and suggested we take on the water filtration systems as a donation celebrating our 50th anniversary from Bellin School of Nursing,” said Audrey Burmeister, class of 1968. “Another suggested that we make it ’50 for the 50th.’ With the generous donations from our class and an anonymous donor, we are able to provide 52 water filtration systems for the upcoming mission trip.”

The water filters will be given to families in the village of Baltimore, which is about 30 minutes from the El Faro mission, and home to Guatemalans of tradition Mayan descent. The first three years Bellin College students and faculty went on this trip, they brought no more than 25 filters. With this gift, they will double that!

Each filter will serve a family of five to six people, and last them about three years. Since this is their fourth year traveling to Guatemala, they will begin replacing the earliest filters they provided.

“We are thrilled to be able to provide clean water to men, women and children,” said Burmeister. “Clean water is so vital to the health of these people.”

The water filters will be given to families in the village of Baltimore, which is about 30 minutes from the El Faro mission, and home to Guatemalans of tradition Mayan descent.

While in Guatemala, the students educate the people about the importance of clean water and, throughout the years, families have come to know what the filters are and desire to have one. When the Bellin College group leaves Baltimore in January 2019, every household in Baltimore will have a water filter, and any leftover will be given to families in the next village in need — Rio Salado.

“It’s great to see this type of generous response from our alumni,” said Lynn Murphy, Guatemala trip coordinator and Bellin College faculty member. “Our alums are great role models for our current students, and we are so thankful for their donation!”

Burmeister and her class encourage students and fellow alumni to be proud of the education they received at Bellin College. The opportunities in nursing are endless, says Burmeister.

 “It doesn’t seem possible that we graduated 50 years ago,” she said. “I’m sure I speak for the entire class when I say we are so proud to be a graduate of Bellin. We were provided an excellent education to enter the nursing field. It is amazing the advancements the college has accomplished in 50 years. Thanks to dedicated administrators, educators, and staff for bringing the college to present day.”

Students in Guatemala.

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mark bake

Congratulations to this year’s Bellin College Distinguished Alumni Award winner: Dr. Mark Bake

Dr. Mark Bake, a 2005 graduate of the Bellin School of Radiologic Science  program, has been selected as the recipient of the 2018 Distinguished Alumni Award.

“Within his role as dean of allied health sciences, Mark works tirelessly to promote the profession and secure the latest technologies for our students,” says Bellin College Alumni Council Chair Chad Dall. “Mark is very passionate about Bellin College, and it shows in the success students achieve every year and in their continued praise of the programs. Bellin College would not be where it is today without the dedication, hard work, and long hours Mark has graced the college with over these past several years.”

Since graduating from the Bellin School of Radiologic Science program, Bake has continued to prove himself as a leader with a vision for the future. He became registered in CT shortly after his initial radiology certification and soon after became the team facilitator in CT imaging at Bellin Health. His natural leadership abilities enabled the CT department to grow into a leader in advanced imaging within the area. His role in the cardiac and stroke programs within the CT department earned him the VIP Award for Individual Innovation from Bellin Health.

He continued to inspire excellence as an adjunct faculty member at Bellin College and as the Bachelor of Science in Radiologic Science (BSRS) program director. Within his role as director, the radiologic science program continued to develop into the bachelor degree program it is today. He has championed for expansion of the imaging side of Bellin College by starting the Bachelor of Science in Diagnostic Medical Sonography program in 2015. Bake has also worked with a team to develop a Doctorate of Science in Physical Therapy program option that recently received full accreditation through the Higher Learning Commission.

On top of the program development strides he has made within Bellin College, Bake has also created the Hands on Healthcare initiative that has brought hundreds of potential healthcare students on campus and off campus with our Mobile Hands on Healthcare extension that visits area schools. Both of these programs look to inspire students into joining the healthcare field.

“I feel extremely honored to receive this recognition and will forever cherish this moment, but am also aware that this is the result of teamwork,” says Bake. “The number of individuals that have impacted my career is endless. The individuals that I currently or have worked with in the past, the patients, the students, the mentors…I could literally go on and on. I feel blessed to say that since starting my career in healthcare I have come to work every day with a smile on my face. There are certainly days that are stressful and challenging but tomorrow is always a new day.”   

Bake will be honored and receive the award at the upcoming Bellin College Homecoming event on Sept. 13 at the Green Bay Botanical Gardens.

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Q&A with an RN to BSN Grad

Q&A with Mary Basten, HSRC Simulation Coordinator at Bellin College
RN to BSN graduate, class of December 2017

Why did you decide to become a nurse?

I had initially wanted to be a high school Spanish teacher. I was really good at learning the Spanish language, and my father was a teacher so I thought it would be a really good fit. I went to UWGB for a year before changing majors. I felt I would have more opportunity to touch more lives as a nurse than I would as a teacher, so I made the switch! I had no idea what a nurse actually did, I had never been sick as a child and had only seen nurses in the clinic setting. I thought it would be easy, and I was proved wrong!

Where did you receive your ADN?

I received my associate’s degree at NWTC in Green Bay.

Where have you worked, and what experiences did you have when you started out in your career?

As a CNA I worked at The Recovery Inn which is a part of Orthopedic and Sports Institute of the Fox Valley. During school, I worked as a Nurse Tech at a nursing home in Kaukauna for a short while. I decided the drive was not for me anymore, so I applied to Bellin Health and was offered the opportunity to work for on the 4th floor of Bellin Hospital. The medical unit was my home during my transition from CNA to RN. I worked on medical for a few years and decided I wanted to try critical care, and the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) at Bellin became my final home. I had the opportunity to work with many sick people and have learned so much from my experiences, it is unexplainable how grateful I am to be a nurse.

What was your job at Bellin and what made you decide to enroll in the RN to BSN Completion program at Bellin College?

I was working as a staff nurse in the ICU at Bellin when I decided to enroll in the RN to BSN program through Bellin College. I decided it was time as I was very motivated to continue school and achieve my goal of becoming a nurse educator. Bellin Health was offering unbelievable assistance through Bellin College so I applied and was accepted into the second cohort. I am forever grateful for this opportunity.

What was your experience in the RN to BSN completion program at Bellin College?

The program worked well with my swing shift schedule. The classes held in person were offered at times which allowed me to continue working full time in the ICU as well as have time for my friends and family. One highlight from the program included traveling to Haiti. I was humbled at the living situation Haitians are faced with as well as enjoying some classes with undergrad students. During my community practicum, I spent the bulk of my time in Haiti where we provided clinic to hundreds of vulnerable people. I slept in a tent on the ground in 100 degrees and cried before I left the country. It’s impossible to explain to anyone the feelings I had while I was there, it was truly remarkable. I also spent some time during my community practicum at other sites including Unity Hospice Residence. I had cared for dying patients during my work as a staff nurse and it was very interesting to see how they could be cared for at the Residence instead of the hospital setting.

How was your experience transitioning from the hospital setting to the college, and what do you like best about working in the HSRC?

My transition from the hospital setting was difficult as I wasn’t sure if I was ready to give it up. It was difficult at first, but I am still currently working PRN in the ICU, and am able to fill my need to care for patients intermittently. The people I work with at the college are some of the greatest people in the world. They all have the student’s goals in mind as they make the gears of the building turn. The thing I like best about my work in the HSRC has to be working with the students. I love seeing the students and their moments of understanding as they learn something new.

What are your future career goals and aspirations?

My ultimate goal is to achieve my master’s degree as a Nurse Educator. 

Any advice for other RNs looking to advance their careers?

My advice is to jump in and do it, no matter what it is. The greatest thing about nursing is that there are so many different areas we can jump into. If you decide you do not like it, there will always be another door to open and another opportunity to try something new.

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Bellin College Pediatric Health Centers provides access to healthcare for children at Encompass

Access to quality healthcare services is something many U.S. citizens take for granted. Regular care is essential for promoting and maintaining health, preventing and managing disease, and reducing unnecessary disability and premature death. Oral health care is as equally important in preventing disease. For some Brown County residents, access to regular care is difficult due to costs or inadequate insurance coverage. Community resources that offer services to those in need make a stronger community and improve the quality of life for all Brown County residents.

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