With health staff at St. Vincent Healthcare in Billings working extra shifts during the COVID-19 surge, finding times for the already busy nurses to give flu shots, let alone get flu shots themselves, was becoming a problem. In fact, a plan to have MSU nursing students give the shots was in danger because no St. Vincent nurses were available to help staff and accompany the students on the flu shot cart.

Jordan Teller, associate clinical professor at the MSU Billings campus was given permission to come to the hospital and supervise the students. For 11 days, they rolled the cart around the facility, night and day, administering 225 vaccinations.

But there was more.
"I solicited cookie donations from several Billings bakeries in hopes of lifting spirits and saying thanks to our health care workers," Teller said. She said the bakeries didn't hesitate. Albertsons, Stella's Bakery and Great Harvest donated over 500 treats.

Dean of the MSU College of Nursing Sarah Shannon said the students were honored to help out during the COVID-19 pandemic. She said, in a news release, "The experience gained was immeasurable for the students both in basic skills and crisis teamwork strategies."

She added, "We truly are in this together. I know our students learned valuable lessons by doing this, including how to support front-line teams during times of stress. Jordan saw a need and stepped up to help fill it. That is what nurses do."

The MSU College of Nursing has students on five Montana campuses. It produces the most Bachelor of Science prepared nurses in Montana. More about at the program is at their website.

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