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BSC and Regis College Sign Memorandum of Understanding, Creating Nuclear Medicine Educational Opportunities for BSC Students

  • Created
    Tuesday, February 05 2013
  • Created by
    Jim Nelson/Media Relations - (304) 327-4103

david gilmore(Bluefield)—At first glance, Regis College in Boston, MA appears to be several hundred miles from Bluefield State College and Montcalm High School. However, for David Gilmore, Chair for Medical Imaging at Regis and Program Director for Nuclear Medicine, his career path would not have been possible without the foundation he received while a student at the Mercer County institutions.

Gilmore, who has been recently named the Associate Dean of Undergraduate Academic Affairs at Regis, returned to the area recently to meet with BSC Radiologic Technology Program Director Melissa Haye and Angela Lambert, Dean of the BSC School of Nursing & Allied Health. Through a series of discussions, BSC and Regis have entered into a memorandum of understanding with intentions to create an agreement by which Bluefield State Rad. Tech students interested in obtaining licensure in nuclear medicine will be able to obtain their Bachelor of Science degree in Radiologic Sciences with a concentration in Nuclear Medicine at BSC and attend Regis in Boston for two semesters beginning in September, participate in clinical rotations at one of the Harvard Medical School affiliated hospitals. BSC will become an academic affiliate of the Regis College Nuclear Medicine Technology program, allowing students to obtain their degree from BSC and have the opportunity to learn, practice, and live in Boston without the expense of New England. Students will finish their clinical rotations after a year in Boston back in southern West Virginia/southwestern Virginia.

"This process has been so exciting from the beginning," noted Melissa Haye, BSC Radiologic Technology program director. "I am always looking for new opportunities for our graduates to gain other certifications, and this was perfect. It also allows our graduates to see that someone from our area can accomplish many things with the foundation that we here at BSC provide to them. Working with David has been a joy and I look forward to a great partnership between Regis and BSC for many years to come."

"There's no way I would be where I am today without the education, training, and encouragement I received at Bluefield State College and at the local hospitals," Gilmore recounted. "When I graduated from Montcalm High School, I was faced with the question of 'what will I do with my life?' and I decided to apply for the Rad. Tech program at BSC. I encountered a great opportunity at both Bluefield Regional Medical Center and at Princeton Community Hospital that created the passion in medical imaging and opened the door to me to do rotations in nuclear medicine. For me, once I rotated in Nuclear Medicine I knew this was a career path for me."

For Gilmore, the closest nuclear medicine program at that time was at Roanoke Memorial Hospital. "I had a great mentor there who pushed me to further my education and become involve in the professional organizations", he continued. After Nuclear Medicine school, I took a job in Roanoke and finished my bachelor's degree. Being involved in the professional societies is what continued to develop my career. I started working at DuPont Pharmaceuticals in the positions of sales and Applications Specialist by which I would work with physicians how to use new radioactive materials in imaging." DuPont gave Gilmore the opportunity to finish my master's degree in education from Virginia Tech.
Gilmore moved to DuPont's worldwide nuclear imaging headquarters outside Boston, coordinating training programs for DuPont's sales force and applications personnel while also developing training modules for DuPont's human resources, leadership, and research & development divisions. Gilmore's passion has been education and, after leaving the corporate world, he moved into education and creating an innovative Nuclear Medicine program in Boston. During this time, Gilmore served as the President of the Society of Nuclear Medicine Technologist Section, the professional society of Nuclear Medicine, representing over 16,000 members and traveled extensively nationally and internationally.

"That's when discussions with Bluefield State College began," he said. "Melissa Haye called and we talked about ways to create a licensing program for nuclear medicine that could be available for Bluefield State College students since the new state law requiring licensure for individuals practicing Nuclear Medicine. Roanoke Memorial Hospital had closed its nuclear medicine program and the only regional option for BSC's Rad. Tech and Radiologic Sciences graduates to pursue nuclear medicine licensure was several hours away."

Concurrently, the new president & CEO at Regis, Dr. Antoinette Hays, was receptive to the possibility of partnering with Bluefield State College. "She decided to give it a try," Gilmore stated. "Meanwhile, Dr. Lewis Jones (BSC Provost) and the stakeholders at BSC continued to work with Regis as we began to think outside the box to develop ways to help Bluefield State students get the proper educational requirements in nuclear medicine for licensure. The result—the new collaborative program between BSC and Regis."

"I received an excellent education from Bluefield State College and it prepared me very well for my future," Gilmore added. "I am example of the fact that you don't have to be from a wealthy background to succeed. There are opportunities for all of us, and this program will provide opportunities for some deserving students from Bluefield State." Gilmore is currently enrolled in a doctoral program at Northeastern University in Boston, Massachusetts.