Marieb College 2020 - 2021 Annual Report

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Our faculty never wavered. They continued to press on amid many challenges, not the least of which was COVID. They were dedicated. They worked four times as hard. They never lost focus on our students and what we are here to do.” – Shawn Felton Interim Dean

2020 WAS A TEST. WE ACED IT. When COVID-19 hit in 2020, the impacts were felt throughout Florida and around the globe. Health and human services workers stepped forward and assumed heroic risks. It is what we teach our students that wellrounded, professional, 360° practitioners do. But the faculty, staff and students of FGCU’s Marieb College of Health & Human Services weren’t able to respond in the traditional ways so many of them wanted to. Instead, we found our own innovative ways to respond. And our college and community are better for it. Here are our stories. Please note that some photos in this annual report were taken prior to the pandemic, post-COVID mask mandates or within full compliance of FGCU’s COVID protocol.



Table of Contents MESSAGE FROM THE DEAN ...................................................................................... 4 SCHOOL OF NURSING ............................................................................................. 6 DEPARTMENT OF COUNSELING ................................................................................ 8 DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH SCIENCES ....................................................................... 11 DEPARTMENT OF REHABILITATION SCIENCES .......................................................... 14 DEPARTMENT OF SOCIAL WORK ............................................................................ 18 MARIEB TRIBUTE ................................................................................................... 21 BY THE NUMBERS .................................................................................................. 22



A MESSAGE FROM THE DEAN Dear Students, Faculty, Friends, Alumni, and Supporters, Welcome to the first report from the Marieb College of Health & Human Services. It is my distinct pleasure to introduce a new annual tradition highlighting the many accomplishments of our students, faculty and community engagements after navigating the most unprecedented year that any of us has ever experienced. Last March, our faculty converted from traditional face-to-face learning to online mechanisms over a weekend — just three days. We now have prevailed through three semesters of modified class sizes, hybrid learning and modified clinical internships. Through all of it, the spirit and resolve of our faculty, staff and students shined through and is stronger than ever. It is an ethic that we have come to know and is paramount to the Marieb College of Health & Human Services. Despite the many challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic, this annual report shines a spotlight on the many successes we experienced. During the 2020-21 academic year, for example, we graduated the second cohort of the Master of Science in Physician Assistant Studies Program. These students excelled on the national licensure examination, scoring 2% above the national average for first-time pass rates. During the pandemic, we also hosted several specialized accreditation visits, including visits from the National Accreditation Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS) for our Clinical Laboratory Science program and the Council for Accreditation of Counseling & Related Educational Programs (CACREP) for our graduate counseling programs. Both visits were superb and reaffirmed the excellence of our Marieb College academic offerings. Additionally, we enrolled our first Doctor of Nursing Practice Nurse Anesthesiology students. We also partnered with industry leader Arthrex to launch one of the first microcredentials at FGCU in the medical device industry. Most importantly, we must highlight the resolve of our faculty and students for their sacrifices and commitment to academic excellence. Once the campus allowed students back in June, our faculty was committed to 1:1 lab instruction — often teaching the same content five times a day in recognition of group size and social distancing guidelines — to ensure the excellence we have come to expect. I welcome you to enjoy the stories highlighted in our first Marieb College of Health & Human Services Annual Report. These stories represent the epitome of our college; however, please remember for every story that we tell in this report there are several more just like it that have gone untold. I am so proud to lead our dedicated faculty and staff and to serve our remarkable students. I hope you enjoy our report and we thank you for your ongoing support. All the best,



2020 was an unforgettable, pivotal year. Most crises have a beginning and end date. You respond to hurricane victims, clean up the hurricane and life gets back to normal. But with COVID-19, there is still no end date in sight. Normal left the building a long time ago. And it is never coming back. We are changed forever. Because of the risk inherent in face-to-face contact with others, FGCU’s Marieb College of Health & Human Services had to pivot. We switched from traditional in-class teaching to virtual in no time at all. We created innovative ways to give our students clinical experience. We reengineered lab exercises to take place online. We successfully maneuvered through reaccreditation processes. We excelled at telehealth. And we found new ways to persist in our calling to serve the community in any way possible. It was a year filled with pivots. A year in which the rules kept changing. And a year in which we learned how uniquely qualified we are at adapting. It was, ultimately, a year none of us will ever forget.


} Department of Counseling } Department of Health Sciences } Department of Rehabilitation Sciences } Department of Social Work




Hitting the ground running when the crisis hit. Who are more prepared than nurses? Nobody really. And that came in handy when having to convert curricula over to the virtual environment in the course of a weekend in March 2020. FGCU uses a learning management system called Canvas to manage course content and delivery, access tools like Zoom, collaborate with students and more. It is like the virtual engine on which the university curriculum runs. Some schools use more of its capabilities than others. The School of Nursing uses it a lot. When COVID hit, Canvas became a critical part of making the shift to virtual classes. Every course in the School of Nursing already had a Canvas course setup where students could obtain information for classes and professors could plan courses, so the transition to virtual classes was fairly easy. In fact, some had already been teaching classes virtually for quite some time. This gave them the time and opportunity to focus on creating high fidelity substitutes for the clinical experiences students had to forego for nine months in 2020.


} M.S. Nurse Educator (M.S.N.) } Nurse Practitioner (B.S.N. to D.N.P.) } Nursing (B.S.N.) } M.S.N. to D.N.P. } Nurse Anesthesiology (B.S.N. to D.N.P.) } Nurse Anesthesiology (M.S.N. to D.N.P.)


} Nurse Educator

The MSN Nurse Anesthesia Program successfully transitioned to the doctoral level with the new BSN-DNP Nurse Anesthesiology Program admitting the first cohort of 24 students in Summer 2020. The DNP Nurse Practitioner Program offered the opportunity for students and faculty to learn about telehealth and interact with telehealth national leaders. While COVID definitely impacted nursing programs, especially those with a clinical component like in the BSN program, it did not impact the ultimate goals of students — graduating, getting certified and getting a job. Our BSN students achieved 100% employment rates, and 98% first-time certification pass rates. Here are some 2020 highlights: } BSN students enrolled in the Community & Public Health Nursing course participated in community COVID vaccination and testing. } 100% first-time FNP certification pass rates in the BSN-DNP Nurse Practitioner Program. } 100% employment rates within six months of graduation from FGCU Nursing programs. } 97.5% of BSN students passed the NCLEX-RN test on first try. National average was 91%. } Nurse Anesthesiology students worked on the front lines from June 2020 on.


} Donated the bulk of the school’s PPE stockpile to area hospitals when supply was low.


Marieb students, alumni and faculty fight COVID on the front lines. “I never thought in my first year of nursing I would be a part of history, working in the heart of a pandemic.” Shelby Miller earned her B.S. in Nursing in 2019. And with little experience under her belt beyond her education at FGCU, she was entrusted to work in Tampa General Hospital’s COVID-19 ICU. “I believe I was able to start out in an ICU as a brand new nurse because of the great education I received,” she observes. “One valuable lesson was to expect the unexpected, and always try to be one step ahead. In these tough times, every healthcare worker has no idea what they are going to walk into on their next shift, but has to walk in with their head high, take care of their patients, and hope they heal and go home to their loved ones.” Shelby’s courage, selflessness and professionalism reflect the response Marieb College students are taught. Throughout the college we saw students and faculty from every health and human services major champing at the bit to serve during the crisis. When assistant nursing professor, Kelly Goebel, had a digital bootcamp and conference canceled because of COVID, she went to work treating coronavirus patients in Naples Community Hospital instead.

“Nurses have the innate ability to be flexible and adaptable to almost any situation that crosses their way,” she says. “Thirty years of experience as a nurse has taught me that you can always depend on your academic and clinical nursing colleagues for support at any time.” FGCU students were finally able to return to clinical settings for internships in spring 2021 and Julio Valdes was among the first to volunteer to administer vaccinations and educate patients on the vaccination process. It’s just one of the ways FGCU students, graduates and faculty are making a positive impact on the communities FGCU serves near and far – even risking their own health amidst all the hardships and tragedies caused by the pandemic in their own lives. Nonetheless, as Julio observes, the first instinct of those in the healing professions is to get out there and serve. “I can see in all of my classes how excited they are to get out and help out and work. I’ve felt the same way, too,” he says. Those among Marieb College’s alumni, staff and faculty heartily agree.


Innovating new approaches and making the most of COVID’s virtual challenges. When a crisis like COVID hits, it’s admirable to take your lemons and make lemonade. But Marieb College’s Department of Counseling went one step further when it came to adjusting to the virtual environment. When hit with lemons, they made lemonade, lemon tarts, lemon chicken and lemon drops. Then they replanted all the lemon seeds. One innovation is what is described as a flipped classroom. When classes went virtual, department head Dr. Suzanne Dugger had the idea to keep normally scheduled classroom times, but not for instruction. Instead, she did the extra work to record her lectures for viewing before class time. Then when class time came around, everyone met online to ask questions, do application exercises and discuss what they learned. That made class time more interactive and students were able to view the lecture again, if needed. The result? “The best evaluations I’ve ever had,” says Dugger. “This could change the way classes are taught in the future.” Another discovery in the virtual space was how underutilized Zoom had been in the past. Using it for faculty meetings added a new level of collaboration among staff and Zoom’s many tools added depth to the meetings not easily achieved in person. The level of collaboration pushed strategic talks forward. As Dugger says, “We became a really cohesive team. Not only did we survive, but we also completed a strategic planning process and have exciting plans for the future, including a proposed Ph.D. program in Counselor Education and Supervision.”



Even the lemons themselves have helped advance FGCU’s Department of Counseling. While a few students continued with face-to-face internships during the crisis, most learned to embrace telehealth. In 2019, telehealth was struggling to get off the ground, but COVID quickly made it a part of our world going forward. Here are some more highlights of 2020: } The department received a full, 8-year accreditation from CACREP during 2020 requiring that the program meet every single accreditation standard. Most programs only receive 2-year accreditations because of unmet standards. } Dr. Alise Bartley received a 2021 Training and Mentorship Award from the International Association of Marriage and Family Counselors. } Dr. Suzanne Dugger received the American Counseling Association’s highest honor as she was inducted as an ACA Fellow in April 2021. } Dr. Sean Hall was selected as co-associate editor of the Journal of Mental Health Counseling, published by the American Mental Health Counselors Association. } Dr. Russ Sabella extended the reach of his expertise by doing virtual workshops that were attended all over the world. By doing this virtually, he didn’t need to incur the expenses and lost time from traveling. } Dr. Ann Tilman received the 2021 FGCU Junior Faculty Teaching Excellence Award. } Two FGCU School Counseling alumni have established nationally recognized RAMP (recognized ASCA model program) standards in their districts. } During its first year of operation, the Community Counseling Center (CCC) subsidized over $164K of counseling services for Southwest Florida residents.

In 2021, the Department of Counseling made strategic moves to propose FGCU’s first doctoral program — a Ph.D. in Counselor Education and Supervision.


} Master of Arts in Clinical Mental Health Counseling } Master of Arts in School Counseling


} Transition to Clinical Mental Health Counseling } Transition to School Counseling } Relationship and Family Counseling



Developing a clientele and community partnerships during a pandemic. The much-anticipated Community Counseling Center (CCC) at FGCU opened in November 2019 with a mission of providing outstanding training of clinical mental health counseling students while offering greater access to mental health services in Southwest Florida. Four months later, COVID hit. On the surface, this would seem like a bad thing. But there were silver linings. Prior to the pandemic, the CCC didn’t provide virtual visits and students were not trained in telehealth. Once COVID hit, that barrier was broken, paving the way for clinical mental health interns to be trained in telehealth while providing virtual visits. COVID also brought mental health into the spotlight, providing copious opportunities for FGCU experts such as Dr. Yaro Garcia, Dr. Russ Sabella, and Dr. Alise Bartley to address these issues in the press and on local TV, bringing awareness and advocacy to mental health issues. This, in turn, brought more attention to the center as an affordable resource for the community. As Dr. Bartley, who runs the CCC observes, “COVID gave us the platform we’ve been begging for in talking about mental health.” Finally, the stress and isolation of the pandemic drew many new clients to the center. The perception of Southwest Florida is one of wealth, but that is just a veneer. Many live in poverty or have citizenship challenges and have no access to needed children’s, couples’ and family counseling. The CCC charges a very low fee that slides based on what the clients can afford.



In the midst of all this disruption, the CCC also implemented a flagship partnership with the Golisano Children’s Museum of Naples (known as C’MON). This program offers children and parents a six-week workshop series focused on developing social and emotional learning in a fun and inviting environment. Workshop topics include effective communication, feelings, selfesteem, social connections, resiliency building and healthy living. Children had the ability to learn through play by using the exhibits in the museum. They explored making healthy choices as they “shopped in the market,” practiced communication skills as they “traveled to new locations,” and gained understanding of empathy as they “adopted a pet.” Hands-on experiences such as these, among many others, allowed the kids and counselors to focus on skills that are essential to social emotional development. They also gave the children something to look forward to during COVID. As of June 2021, the CCC has served 1,250 clients across 3,641 appointments. Children and parents are communicating better thanks to C’MON. Student interns were able to continue their internships through the pandemic, learning virtual counseling skills to add to their in-person skills. The center is conducting research on counseling topics. And the community is more aware after numerous press appearances about mental health. Any new program would be proud to claim those achievements in its first year of operation. The CCC did it all during a crisis. Just imagine what it can do as we move forward!


Showing that transparency is the best policy in a crisis. The Department of Health Sciences is the largest department within the Marieb College and it accounts for approximately 42% of the student credit hour production for the college. Most of the programs in the DHS already had some degree of online curriculum. So that transition went smoothly. Students kept their normal class times, but just attended online. The MPAS in Physician Assistant Studies program, however, was different. For graduation, school accreditation and student licensure, there are specific rotations students have to complete to qualify. So the MPAS program had to come up with other ways to meet those requirements. Through the summer of 2020 they used simulations to mimic real-life experiences. Then, when students returned in the fall, they worked extra hard to make up any requirements they had missed. In the end, the entire cohort gained the hands-on experience they needed to graduate, with 95% of them passing the licensure exam — two points higher than the national average of 93%.

A key focus during the crisis department-wide was transparency. Students, faculty and staff had input into decision-making and were kept abreast of developments. Students thanked us for making the process easy, remarking that they “have it better than all the other programs in the state.” Here are more Health Services highlights from 2020: } Molecular Diagnostics Program started in Spring 2021, a program that has partnered with local employer NeoGenomics Laboratories in a workforce talent development pipeline consisting of scholarship support for eligible students. } Clinical Laboratory Science received re-accreditation for 10 years in Spring 2021 based on a successful review from its accrediting body, NAACLS, in Fall 2020. } Redeveloped MS in Health Sciences curriculum to have a more administrative focus and expanded hours from 36 to 45. The new curriculum went into effect in Fall 2020. } Reactivated the BS in Health Administration program for Fall 2020.


FGCU’s Robert Hawkes on the frontlines of explaining the pandemic to Southwest Florida Besides making sure students have as complete an educational experience as possible during the COVID-19 pandemic, Florida Gulf Coast University faculty and staff also have played important roles in the response to this crisis. Among the legion of ordinary people who became extraordinary in challenging times was Robert Hawkes, director of physician assistant studies in the Marieb College. Few faculty were as sought after and accessible during the pandemic as Hawkes on topics such as the importance of social distancing, wearing masks and self-quarantining; why flu shots are more important than ever; the effectiveness of contact tracing; and how vaccines are formulated and produced. Already a frequent go-to source for area reporters on health topics well before coronavirus, Hawkes has participated in locally televised panel discussions and offered expert analysis on COVID-19 for every major media outlet in the region. Demand for his insights have taken FGCU’s presence into the Tampa and West Palm Beach markets and even landed him on CBS2 New York last December along with Dr. Alise Bartley, director of FGCU’s Community Counseling Center. “I feel it is important to break down the important topics in an easy-to-understand, conversational format,” Hawkes said. “I try to take the research data available and present the topic in a concise way that the viewer or reader can understand.



“Marieb College and FGCU have areas of expertise to share, and I am pleased that we are seen as a community resource to share critical information with the local media. The media exposure will create additional awareness of the essential requirements of healthcare in our region.” Hawkes and his colleagues in Marieb College of Health & Human Services have offered unprecedented service to the community on several fronts at a time when it’s needed more than ever: communicating the evolving data and science around COVID-19; calming fears with the latest information on prevention and treatment; providing comfort and healing in a time of widespread suffering and loss. All this while maintaining their primary roles as teachers and administrators. Marieb College’s prominent role in responding to varied facets of the pandemic position FGCU well to play a critical part on the frontlines of whatever public health crisis may come in the future. “The pandemic has changed the way we function as a society,” Hawkes said. “We are continuing to learn how to change our daily routines. Once the current pandemic subsides, we will continue to utilize social distancing in larger settings, and become more aware to wash our hands more frequently. Also, we have all become more proficient in using new technology to communicate with our students and families.” As Southwest Florida moves forward into this new landscape, residents know they will have a now familiar face to guide them all the way.

Robert Hawkes kept Southwest Florida informed through more than 500 media mentions and interviews — sometimes doing 4-6 interviews per day —positioning the Marieb College as the go-to resource during the crisis.


} Bachelor of Science in Clinical Laboratory Sciences } Bachelor of Science in Health Administration } Bachelor of Science in Health Sciences } Bachelor of Science in Public Health } Master of Science in Health Sciences } Master of Physician Assistant Studies


} Clinical Laboratory } Health Services Administration } Molecular Diagnostics

Marieb College and FGCU have areas of expertise to share, and I am pleased that we are seen as a community resource to share critical information with the local media. The media exposure will create additional awareness of the essential requirements of healthcare in our region.” – Robert Hawkes

Robert Hawkes




Responding to COVID by practicing the agility we teach. Exercise science, occupational therapy, athletic training, physical therapy — all disciplines require hands-on assistance, precise techniques and lots of supervised practice to master. But how do you pull that off in the midst of a pandemic? That was the chief challenge COVID posed when the Department of Rehabilitation Sciences had to suspend in-person learning in 2020. Prior to COVID, about 30% of the programs’ courses were virtual. So while it took a great deal of effort to transform the other 70% of classes for synchronous learning, it was within our wheelhouse. But each of our programs also has a lab feature where techniques are learned and practiced. And those skills are critical to graduation and certification. So faculty and staff went to work recording some labs and curating virtual lab content from websites and from the platform PhysioU. Then students would record themselves practicing the techniques, often using family and members of their COVID pod as “patients.” Though timeconsuming for all involved, it was a seamless and effective approach.



By June 2020, some students were back on campus. For those returning to campus, the number of in-person labs increased to support social distancing and group sizes. Through all the hard work, uncertainty and moment-by-moment changes of 2020, we learned some new things. We found that our students can benefit through various modes of learning and that in-person learning is not necessarily always the best. We learned that students greatly valued the support of their families while studying from home. It relieved some of the stress. They also liked virtual office hours with their professors because it was more convenient. And finally, when classes went virtual, so did our problem-based learning discussion groups. Students liked the virtual discussion format so much that we are making it a part of the curriculum.

Despite all of 2020’s challenges, we remained agile and maintained the progress of our programs. Some highlights include: } Exercise Science

} Enrollment increased among students starting the upper- level curriculum. 70 in 2020 compared to 50 in the past years. } Gold level (highest) recognition from the American College of Sports Medicine for Exercise is Medicine on campus. } Recognition from the National Strength and Conditioning Association for being an Education Recognition program.

} Physical Therapy

} The FGCU Physical Therapy & Rehabilitation Clinic has opened for a limited number of patients on campus. } Started an Orthopedic Residency program and Fellowship program through the American Physical Therapy Association. } Board pass rates at the national average or better.

} Occupational Therapy

} 100% board pass rates.

} Assistant Professor Annemarie Connor received a foundation grant to start the Community Autism Network.

} The Student Occupational Therapy Association performed more than 400 hours of community service with a variety of local organizations.

FGCU Rehabilitation Sciences alum gives weary warriors a fighting chance. Home Base, a collaboration between the Red Sox Foundation and the Massachusetts General Hospital Program, is dedicated to healing the invisible wounds of veterans through clinical care, wellness, research and education. In 2014, Home Base launched a Warrior Health and Fitness program at FGCU under the leadership of Armando Hernandez (’14, B.S.) and in partnership with the Department of Rehabilitation Sciences. Home Base WHF is a wellness program for veterans that encompasses fitness, nutrition and mindfulness. All services provided are at no cost and are open to spouses as well. The program is designed to help veterans and warriors improve their physical health and well-being through supervised physical exercise, education about healthy eating, living, sleep hygiene, stress management and the health benefits of physical activity. Additionally, the program serves as a portal to more complex care for those in need of treatment for the invisible wounds. Participants benefit from working in partnership with medical providers to make informed choices that promote lifelong health, while simultaneously forming a new band of ”brothers and sisters” through shared experiences designed around positive competition. Armando is a Marine and Iraq war veteran who had a difficult time transitioning to civilian life himself. He found relief through diet and exercise. While earning his degree at FGCU, he interned with the Red Sox who asked him to create a program for veterans for their foundation. Florida Gulf Coast University has hosted 500



As a veteran and an alumnus, I’m proud that FGCU tries so hard to maintain, increase and improve health services for veterans in SW Florida. Their partnership with Home Base has made a huge impact on our program.” – Armando Hernandez, ‘14, B.S. veterans and spouses since the WHF program began — nearly 100 in 2020 alone. The university has made this possible by providing a reliable training facility where Home Base can offer its services and the equipment needed. “As a veteran and an alumnus, I’m proud that FGCU tries so hard to maintain, increase and improve health services for veterans in SW Florida,” says Hernandez. “Their partnership with Home Base has made a huge impact on our program.” The WHF program has been so successful and has grown so much, in fact, that FGCU has recently moved the program out of its Exercise Science labs and into a home base all its own in the Kleist Center. Together, FGCU and Home Base WHF are delivering much-needed services to the community and serving heroes who have served us.

Armando Hernandez

DEPARTMENT OF REHABILITATION SCIENCES DEGREE PROGRAMS } Bachelor of Science in Exercise Science } Master of Science in Athletic Training } Master of Science in Occupational Therapy

FGCU Physical and Occupational Therapy students enjoy 100% employment rates after graduation.

} Doctor of Physical Therapy } Transitional Doctor of Physical Therapy




Maintaining our community commitment throughout the crisis. FGCU’s Department of Social Work has the distinction of being the only academic social work program in Southwest Florida. Social workers are the largest providers of mental health in the country and FGCU’s program is vital to supplying the region with qualified professionals. We maintain many collaborative partnerships with local social service agencies, many of whom welcome our students as interns.

} Having more than 125 students complete field education internships with local social service agencies.

During crises when nearly everyone else is closing down or reducing their services, social work programs stay open. They are critical to maintaining lives when chaos hits. Our student interns know this and insisted on serving Southwest Florida through these programs, either virtually or face-to-face. That means Department of Social Work students did not miss a beat in their internships, regardless of shutdowns and restricted access in other local services. They were on-site, assisting the Harry Chapin Food Bank, Lee County Human and Veteran Services, Lee Cares, Elite DNA Therapy and others that remained open. But even services that did not remain face-to-face, like Eva’s Closet, brought in interns to help.

} Having two faculty members participating in statewide academic consortium to develop a unified curriculum focused on substance use disorders and treatment.

Social Work students also lost very little face time in the classroom. The program did go virtual for the remainder of spring semester, March through May 2020. Because the summer program is 100% virtual anyway, COVID did not interrupt it in the least. And when fall semester rolled around, students overwhelmingly voted to return to in-person learning. Despite one of the most far-reaching and longest crises the world has ever faced, FGCU’s Department of Counseling 2020 highlights include: 18


} Achieving a 99% average graduation rate for MSW students and 97% average graduation rates for BSW. } Maintaining Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW) exam pass rates on par with national averages for both first-time and repeat candidates.

} Developing a library social work program in partnership with Lee County Public Libraries. } Celebrating two Social Work students being inducted into the FGCU Hall of Fame and having another selected as Marieb College Undergraduate Student of the Year.

} Hosting several donation drives sponsored by the Social Work Student Association. } Having two alumni found the Family Initiative Autism Support Center, SWFL’s first facility dedicated to serving individuals and families impacted by Autism Spectrum Disorder.

DEPARTMENT OF SOCIAL WORK DEGREE PROGRAMS } Bachelor of Social Work (B.S.W.) } Master of Social Work (M.S.W.)

CERTIFICATE } Medical Social Work

Florida’s #1 academic Social Work program for providing the highest monthly earning potential after graduation for BSW and MSW students.



Social Work professor creates dashboard to provide SWFL with a healthy dose of COVID-19 info. Information on COVID-19 spreads at a pace as rapid as the virus itself. So trying to find the services you need and where and when they are available is akin to striking a moving target. Enter Dr. Tom Felke, FGCU associate professor of social work and chair of the department, who has the expertise and patience to cure this dilemma by plowing through all the disparate sites and organizing the data into something that’s easy to navigate, timely and accurate. “I saw the state Department of Health dashboard and realized it’s for the entire state of Florida,” he said. “For the novice who’s not familiar with how it works, it’s hard to find data for where you are. Most people are interested in their own backyard. I thought we could develop our own version using the same data but target it more to Southwest Florida.” The Southwest Florida COVID-19 Information & Resources Dashboard uses up-to-date information from the Florida Department of Health in an easy-to-navigate format. Users can pick a county to discover: } Testing, case and hospitalization data for that county. } General information from the Florida Department of Health, daily updates from the Centers for Disease Control and forecasting by the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation.



} Information on agencies such as United Way, county human services and Salvation Army, area food pantries, regional hospitals, support services for older adults and mental and behavioral health services. } An interactive map showing mobile food pantries in the region, divided into those that are specifically for children 18 and younger and those for all ages. It is searchable by ZIP code or address. Casey Nobile (’14, Social Work, ’17, MSW), a medical social worker for Lee Memory Care, uses the dashboard to help the seniors she works with find the services and products they need. “At times like these, when everyone’s stress is heightened and they are worried about their needs for food and shelter – and some aren’t working and can’t pay for food because of lack of income – having this resource makes a very stressful situation less stressful,” Nobile said. “It’s like a one-stop shop for everything you could need to support you through this pandemic. I’ve been able to share it with my contacts in the health and social work fields so they can help support their clients to the best of their ability as well.”


Meet the woman behind Marieb College of Health & Human Services. Our college, and the building in which it resides, proudly bear the name of scholar, textbook author and philanthropist Elaine Nicpon Marieb, R.N., Ph.D. (pronounced MARE-ib). She was a biologist, nurse and educator who authored 13 anatomy and physiology textbooks used by universities nationwide. Her success allowed her to make a significant impact as a philanthropist by, among other things, making a $15 million investment in FGCU to support the health professions building, programs, faculty and scholarships.

I feel FGCU offers a teaching style similar to my own, a style that connects lessons to examples and to things the students would remember so lessons stick. As for the students, they continue to impress me with the devotion they have for their studies and to changing their lives. For the students that I have come to know, I continue to be touched by the appreciation they have expressed.” —Elaine Nicpon Marieb, R.N., Ph.D. (1936 - 2018)

“Clearly, Elaine Marieb has had a profound effect on FGCU, its students and the community we serve,” said FGCU President Mike Martin. “Her investment in FGCU’s health sciences programs has been transformational. The confidence she placed in this institution provided the impetus for those who embrace excellence. Elaine’s impacts will be felt for generations to come. She will be missed, but it is of great benefit to so many who came to know Elaine Marieb. She has left a powerful legacy.”






faculty members

25 staff

2,589 students



of FGCU’s undergraduate students


of FGCU’s graduate students



undergraduate programs


graduate programs 22



2,045 Females









57% White










TOTAL in 39 states and 4 countries


in the 5-county region


514 307 in Lee County




FGCU’s Marieb College has the #1 RN program in Florida (out of 145 programs)


45% 46%

increase since 2015 of all FGCU graduate degrees are produced by Marieb

SPECIALIZED ACCREDITATIONS } Accreditation Council for Occupational Therapy Education


} Accreditation Review Commission on Education for the

Physician Assistant, Inc. (ARC-PA)

} Commission on Accreditation for Physical Therapy

Education (CAPTE)

} Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE)

Marieb (MARE-ib) noun

last name of philanthropist, educator and author Dr. Elaine Nicpon Marieb

} Council on Accreditation of Nurse Anesthesia Educational

Programs (COA)

} Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related

Educational Programs (CACREP)

} Council on Social Work Education – Commission on

Accreditation (CSWE)

} National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory

Science (NAACLS)


23 This annual report features illustrations of works by artist Lucas Century, whose sandstone etchings of anatomical parts were inspired by the textbooks of Dr. Elaine Nicpon Marieb. His creations adorn the walls of the lobby in Marieb Hall.