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Laredo Campus Extension Expands Allied Health Sciences Programs

August 2007

Irene Moreno, a PA student, examines a child in Laredo.
Irene Moreno, a PA student, examines a child in Laredo.
The Laredo Campus Extension is growing by leaps and bounds through a variety of initiatives that include programs from the School of Allied Health Sciences.

Six students are embarking this fall on the physician assistant studies program via distance learning. This program is part of the early admissions partnership with Texas A&M International University (TAMIU).

Distance learning has proved to be an effective tool in other curricula, including the respiratory care program. "Our recent graduates have improved the quality of patient care in hospitals in Laredo," said Marilyn Harrington, Ph.D., dean of the School of Allied Health Sciences. The program also is a partnership with TAMIU.

The first joint degree program with TAMIU, a bachelorís degree in dietetics, is in development and slated to begin in fall 2008 under the leadership of Carmen Roman-Shriver, Ph.D., R.D., program director and associate professor, and Brent Shriver, Ph.D., associate professor. With epidemic levels of obesity and related diseases, the demand is high for employment in hospitals, in schools and in dietetic counseling and agriculture. An internship for a clinical masterís program in dietetics also will be developed. Talks for a Ph.D. in nutritional sciences at the HSC are currently under way with participation from The University of Texas at Austin, The University of Texas at San Antonio, The University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center and TAMIU.

Dental hygiene students continue prevention measures and cleanings primarily for people with diabetes and for children living in the colonias and other underserved communities in Laredo. Their work is carried out through the Building Oral Health Care Access (BOCHA) program, which partners with Gateway Community Health Center and Mercy Ministries of Laredo. Students also have the opportunity to take part in the South Texas Environmental Education and Research (STEER) program, and learn about relationships between the environment and health.

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Updated 12/11/14