Rep. Josh Dobson visits Lees-McRae’s May School of Nursing and Health Sciences

January 21, 2015

On Tuesday, January 20, Lees-McRae welcomed Rep. Josh Dobson to campus for a private tour of the newly constructed May School of Nursing and Health Sciences. Dobson was appointed to the N.C. House of Representatives in January 2013 and represents the 85th District including Avery, McDowell and Mitchell counties.

The representative’s connections to the High Country run deep having graduated from Avery County High School and earned his master’s degree at Appalachian State University. While he serves on the Justice and Public Safety and Judicial oversight committees, he is also a strong advocate for better educator support.

After meeting with Lees-McRae President Barry M. Buxton, the representative took a tour of the May School of Nursing and Health Sciences. This 18,000 square foot facility houses the existing athletic training program and the new emergency medical services and management program, and will soon be home to the pre-licensure nursing program (pending NCBON approval). Collectively, the May School will serve more than 300 Lees-McRae students and generate more than 2,000 clinical hours spent in the local community.

“We are so appreciative that Rep. Dobson took time to visit Lees-McRae,” said President Buxton. “With his roots in Avery County, we wanted him to see the transformation Lees-McRae has experienced since the last time he was on campus. We hope he enjoyed his experience, especially the tour of the May School of Nursing and Health Sciences. We are hopeful this facility and the students that matriculate through its curriculum will significantly alter healthcare in Avery County and the High Country.”

The proposed pre-licensure nursing program has already generated approximately 80 pre-nursing students for fall 2014, and it poses many opportunities for future growth. The nursing curriculum will begin in fall 2015 pending approval from the North Carolina Board of Nursing. Currently, students identifying an interest in nursing are completing the core bachelor of science coursework needed for program application. The athletic training program, which has long been a flagship program at Lees-McRae, recently received accreditation with CAATE through 2021.

The facility features the latest technology including an EMT Simulation Lab, which houses a full-scale ambulance simulator; the Hart Simulation Suite, which features 3G wireless human simulators and a simulated inpatient hospital unit complete with exam tables, hospital beds and a replicated efficiency apartment; and an Athletic Training Simulation Lab, which will feature a Biodex, treadmills, treatment tables, a bicycle ergometer and modalities.

For more information about Lees-McRae College, please visit or call 828.898.5241.

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Media Contact:

Nina Mastandrea  |  Content Manager
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Rep. Josh Dobson and President Barry M. Buxton