Kenai Peninsula College, Clarion collaborate on newspaper

Around Campus

Posted: Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Beginning next month, the college’s newsletter, the KPC Connection, will elevate to a newspaper and will be distributed as an eight-page insert, tabloid style, in the Peninsula Clarion and Homer News. Current plans have the college newspaper being distributed at the end of the month in Monday editions with a circulation of 6,500 in the Clarion and 4,000 in the Homer News.

The project was proposed to college director, Gary Turner, by Clarion publisher Stan Pitlo.

“Stan called me one day and asked if we could have lunch. He got the idea for this project from a colleague at a conference he attended. He saw it as a very positive collaboration; good for the Clarion, the college and the community,” Turner said.

The Clarion staff will design the template for the paper layout and the college will provide the content for the publication. Plans for the paper include showcases of student writing and photography, editorials by administration, columns by staff and faculty, movie, video game, and music reviews, as well as informative pieces from Campus Services regarding upcoming classes and events. Faculty participation in the project is voluntary, but it is anticipated many will view the paper as a vehicle to promote their classes or the degree programs that they serve as advisers for.

All segments of Kenai Peninsula College will have the opportunity to take part in the project. The KPC Connection represents an opportunity for the college to fully engage peninsula communities on a regular basis. It is expected the newspaper will be a bridge to a segment of the population who otherwise would not be exposed to what KPC has to offer.

At the present time, seven editions are planned for publication, with the first edition being printed the last week in February. Editions are planned for March, April, and then a summer edition covering May, June, July, and August. The fall semester will have three editions; September, October and November.

The college system is anticipating the release of the next generation of KPC generated media. Communication is vital in education and having a bona fide college- generated newspaper will move KPC, a community campus of the University of Alaska Anchorage, in the right direction.

KPC student health clinic serving more students

Staying healthy in a college environment, with large crowds, common study areas, and plenty of caffeine and stress can be challenging. Recognizing that health insurance is out of reach for most college students, when space became available with the Ward Building addition, KPC collaborated with Central Peninsula Hospital to create the Kenai River Campus Student Health Clinic.

The facility is the only on-campus health clinic at any community campus in the University of Alaska system.

Students at KPC taking six or more credits are eligible to be seen in the clinic at no charge for office visits. Lab testing, immunizations and other necessary testing are offered at reduced cost and every effort is made to try to minimize costs to students.

The collaboration with CPH allowed for part-time advanced nurse practioner Jennifer Henry to be the attending health professional staffing the clinic.

Henry said, “We are seeing the pattern of clinic usage steadily increase. Last semester student visits were about seven percent of the total eligible student population; that number has climbed to 19 percent this semester.”

Currently the clinic provides wellness check-ups and screenings, treatment and prescriptions for minor injuries and illnesses, annual women’s exams and birth control prescriptions, nutrition and dietary counseling, depression screening, immunizations, blood pressure checks and treatment, lab work, blood titers and other basic medical care.

“We are continually trying to expand our services and provide high quality, low cost care for KPC students. We accept both appointment and walk-in visits, but appointments take priority. If we are unable to provide a specific service, we will make the appropriate referral. We believe that knowledge is empowerment and that it is our responsibility to provide patient education and learning opportunities whenever possible,” said Henry.

This column is provided by Suzie Kendrick, community relations coordinator at Kenai Peninsula College.

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