Farewell to a Wonderful Year

As the year comes to an end and we approach the Holiday Season, we pause to reflect on our progress and how thankful we are to be part of this institution. I am thankful for the Board of Directors, faculty, staff and students that make up the Saint Luke’s College of Health Sciences family. I am especially thankful for the hard work and commitment of all. 

The 2017 year has been remarkable on many fronts. First, after a complete review of the College’s Strategic Plan and presenting a solid plan to expand the breadth and scope of its academic offerings, the College reached four notable milestones: 
  • It was authorized to offer a Family Nurse Practitioner (FNP) track as part of its existing Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) program.
  • It was approved to expand the student body allowing students to enroll in associate-level degree programs.
  • It was approved to offer the Associate of Science in Medical Assisting program.
  • It was approved the to offer the Associate of Arts in Allied Health and Associate of Science in Allied Health programs.
These achievements are the result of careful planning; of a committed Board of Directors; and of a College community who believed in a new and expanded vision for the institution. 
Second, I do not want to minimize the importance of our nursing programs which are the hallmark of our College. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) program continues to be the fundamental pillar of the College; applications reached unprecedented numbers, and our NCLEX results continue to be on the rise. Our MSN programs are growing and certification results are impeccable.
Third, the College implemented other initiatives that are strengthening the brand of Saint Luke’s College. We launched the General Education Program, to support the mission of preparing health professions leaders that effectively meet the needs of diverse populations. We created and implemented Pathways to Health and Science Education Program. This is the College’s first formal step to create a bridge for diverse students into the College. Twelve students, six girls and six boys who are attending Missouri and Kansas high schools were accepted into the first cohort of the program which started on September 9, 2017, and will end in May of 2018.
Finally, I want to acknowledge that our work is far from being complete. Next year we will implement several new programs, and with this, we will welcome a diverse population to our College. We receive them with open arms; thank them for entrusting us with their education, and we will go the extra miles to make their educational journey and experience an outstanding one. In closing, let’s take this season to pause and reflect on the important things around us: our family, friends and colleagues; our work; and our health — let’s give thanks for the many blessings we have received. 
Happy Hanukkah, Merry Christmas, Happy Kwanzaa and Happy Holidays to everyone. I look forward to a wonderful 2018.
As always, thank you for believing in Saint Luke’s College of Health Sciences.
Hubert Benitez, DDS, PhD
President and Chief Executive Officer
Barbara Meinke and Robert A. Kleist Endowed Professor
Saint Luke’s College of Health Sciences