August 20, 2014  

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Hattiesburg Clinic Supports DuBard School, School of Nursing

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A $100,000 commitment to The University of Southern Mississippi Foundation from Hattiesburg Clinic will help fund the DuBard School for Language Disorders’ 50th Anniversary Campaign and the School of Nursing Building Campaign at Southern Miss.

“Hattiesburg Clinic is pleased to support the DuBard School and the School of Nursing at The University of Southern Mississippi,” said Tommy Thornton, executive director of Hattiesburg Clinic. “These two areas are important, not only in providing education in health care-related fields, but they improve the quality of life for residents of South Mississippi.”

The gift from Hattiesburg Clinic will be split equally between the two initiatives.

“This gift affirms the forward-thinking leadership role of Hattiesburg Clinic in the regional health services community,” said Dr. Michael Forster, dean of the College of Health at Southern Miss. “Hattiesburg Clinic is an exemplary partner and friend of the College and the University.”

The DuBard School for Language Disorders at Southern Miss brings the gift of oral and written language to individuals with severe communication disorders through the use of the DuBard Association Methodin direct clinical services and professional training.

In celebration of its 50th anniversary, the DuBard School has announced a $2 million fundraising campaign to galvanize the future and longevity of the School. The DuBard School 50th Anniversary Campaign will support operations and capital improvements, scholarships, professional development and research development.

The money generated from the campaign will ensure that students at the DuBard School receive speech, language and academic therapy and see that those pursuing training in the areas of speech-language pathology, audiology, education of the deaf and specialized reading instruction have a place to learn and excel.

“The generous commitment of the Hattiesburg Clinic will help to ensure we can continue to deliver vital services to children with significant speech, language and hearing disabilities as well as the written language disorder of dyslexia,” said Dr. Maureen Martin, director of the DuBard School. “Also, there is a direct relationship between services to children and preparing university students for future careers. The Clinic’s investment will bear fruit in the DuBard School and elsewhere for many years to come.”

The DuBard School was founded in 1962 when a member of The University of Southern Mississippi’s faculty needed specialized education for his son. At that time, the president of the University, Dr. William D. McCain, appointed Dr. Etoile DuBard to establish the School for Preschool Deaf and Aphasic Children. The opening of the School was a collaborative effort between Southern Miss, the United Way and parents of prospective students. The first class had just three children.

Fifty years later, the School, which was renamed the DuBard School for Language Disorders in 1996, serves more than 500 children and their families through enrollment, outclient therapy, evaluations and referral services each year.

More than 150 professionals from across the nation undergo training in the DuBard Association Method annually. The School also serves as a teaching and practicum site for dozens of Southern Miss students studying speech-language pathology, audiology, deaf education, science education, human performance and recreation, music, social work and other academic areas.

The Hattiesburg Clinic gift will also support the School of Nursing. The School of Nursing Building Campaign, which was announced on Jan. 18, will help fund a new facility for the School of Nursing at Southern Miss. The state-of-the-art facility, which will be located on the western edge of the Hattiesburg campus, will increase the square footage dedicated to the School of Nursing by 135 percent, providing much-needed space for faculty and students and replacing a facility that can no longer meet the requirements of nursing education.

The new School of Nursing building will allow for an increase in nursing enrollment from the current 550 students to more than 800 and expand new programs in the School of Nursing through student interactive areas, an enlarged and enhanced clinical simulation lab, computer labs and classrooms that will promote the acquisition of knowledge in a positive and interactive learning environment.

“I appreciate the financial investment by Hattiesburg Clinic for the School of Nursing Building Campaign and the investment that they have made in collaborating with us in providing future nurses with the educational environment that will promote the learning of the necessary competencies for future practices,” said Dr. Katherine Nugent, director of the School of Nursing at Southern Miss. “The success of the School of Nursing is dependent upon the assistance of our communities of interest and the part they play in our educational mission.”

Through the new space, the School of Nursing hopes to increase interaction and partnerships with the community by providing areas for community forums on health and professional nursing issues, simulation space for interdisciplinary training, and foyer and dining space to host receptions.

“The Hattiesburg Clinic has been a long-time, strong partner with Southern Miss, and we are grateful for the Clinic’s involvement with these two important initiatives within our College of Health,” said Bob Pierce, vice president for university advancement and executive director of the USM Foundation. “The DuBard School and our Nursing program are both about improving quality of life, and this gift from Hattiesburg Clinic will assist each in fulfilling their mission.”

For more information on the DuBard School 50th Anniversary Campaign and the School of Nursing Building Campaign, contact the USM Foundation by calling 601.266.5210 or visiting www.usmfoundation.com.