Wednesday, September 22nd, 2021

Graduates of innovative nursing honored

Posted: Thursday, May 30, 2013

With the help of American Senior Communities and the Opportunities to Nursing Excellence Program, 14 senior healthcare workers, including a Markle woman, will soon don RN and LPN caps. They all completed nursing programs at accredited schools, with costs paid by American Senior Communities, a network of 60 Senior Rehabilitation and Memory Care facilities throughout Indiana.

Aware of the shortage of nurses, the leadership at American Senior Communities had the idea to expand their support of caregiver staff in a practical way. Through the awareness that furthering the education of caregivers ultimately leads to healthier and happier residents, they decided to make it as practical as possible for staff to continue their formal education without being penalized financially or suffering added stress in their current jobs.

The Opportunities to Nursing Excellence (O2NE) program gives ASC nursing staff the opportunity to become licensed practical nurses and registered nurses. The program helps ASC staff achieve new levels of education and abilities, enhancing the care given to ASC residents. Since the program asks graduates for no obligation to ASC, they are free to use the education wherever they choose.

American Senior Communities’ locations across the state nominate staff members who go through a rigorous application process to enter the program. Selected candidates are then offered the opportunity to return to school, fully paid for by ASC.  They are also given a 30-hour work schedule while being paid for their regular 40-hour schedule, allowing additional time for classes and study without being penalized financially.  ASC also provides assistance for childcare, alleviating another common stress point for adults returning to school. This is the program’s fourth year.

Dan Benson, COO of American Senior Communities said, “It’s been amazing to see the impact it has had on their lives, the lives of their families, and on the people they care for in our communities.  It’s such a thrill seeing that the program has taken hold and now we’re honoring another group of graduates.  It’s very moving to see the pride of accomplishment in their faces.  They did the hard work; we just afforded them the opportunity to do it.”

A luncheon honoring this year’s graduates was held Wednesday at the Bridgewater Club in Carmel, where the graduates were presented a certificate and a special stethoscope to commemorate the achievement.

Graduates who work at ASC Fort Wayne-area communities are: Kelly Patire, RN, Bethlehem Woods; Karissa Caprioni and Robin Salyers, both LPN program graduates at Heritage Park; and Brooke Vogleman, LPN, Markle Health and Rehabilitation.

“The core idea behind the O2NE program is to continually breathe new life into the healthcare industry and for it to benefit all Hoosiers, not just those in our care at ASC,” said Benson. “We hope to be sending more graduates into the field for many years to come.”

For more information about American Senior Communities, please visit

Shown in the photo from left, are Brooke Vogleman, new LPN; Vicki Shepherd, executive director and Lisa Mack, director of nursing, all of Markle Health and Rehabilitation.