BATON ROUGE, LA - As Louisiana and the nation manages the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, Louisiana's Community and Technical Colleges are stepping up to provide support and additional services to help the state in its response to the pandemic. During the crisis, LCTCS college leadership, faculty, and staff have balanced transitioning instruction to an online environment, supporting their local communities in a time of need, and remaining committed to the mission of building Louisiana's workforce. As widely reported, hospitals are experiencing staff exhaustion due to the sheer number of hours worked to treat patients. Hospitals and other healthcare facilities are also experiencing a shortage of Personal Protection Equipment or PPEs. To help address both issues, LCTCS colleges are answering the call.
Nursing and Allied Health Deans at all LCTCS colleges are focused on graduating more than 2,000 health care students in an accelerated fashion to get them into the workforce.
LCTCS is working directly with the Louisiana State Lab to fill immediate job openings with recent or soon to be graduates.
Through its years-long partnership with Ochsner, Nunez Community College is dedicating its newly designed SkillShop to rapidly produce essential parts for face shield manufacturing. Ochsner has approved the face shield prototype, and production at Nunez is currently underway with the goal of producing approximately 3,000 units per week. Nunez is also using its 3D printers and Laser Cutter to produce respirator prototype parts. Once approved, the 3D printers will begin mass production. Nunez is working collaboratively with the other 11 community and technical colleges across the state to share files and design concepts so 3D printing can be brought to scale statewide.
Northshore Technical Community College has provided Slidell Memorial Hospital with its Mobile STEM Lab to be used as part of the hospital's drive-through testing center. Specifically, the mobile lab is being used by doctors as an emergency response center.
Delgado Community College is offering online workshops for small businesses applying for Small Business Administration (SBA) disaster loans. As of today, more than 100 small businesses are participating.
LCTCS colleges have arranged for all remaining PPE products to be donated to local hospitals.
Pictured below is a recent graduate of Nunez Community College currently working on the frontlines and the face shield currently in production. Additional pictures are of staff members from Delgado Community College, Central Louisiana Technical Community College, South Louisiana Community College delivering PPE products, and the Northshore Technical Community College Mobile STEM Lab.