Nursing students observe child development at Reserve daycare

Published 11:45 pm Tuesday, April 15, 2014

By Monique Roth


RESERVE – Twenty-one local students studying practical nursing at South Central Louisiana Technical College in Reserve recently wrapped up clinical training at Little Leaders Learning Center.

Debbie Zeringue, nursing department head at SCLTC, said the purpose of the collaboration was for nursing students to observe normal growth development in the children who attend Little Leaders in Reserve, which is the only four-star-rated childcare facility in St. John the Baptist Parish. The partnership between the school and daycare began in February.

Zeringue explained the program has long been in place for nursing students to do clinicals at hospitals and learn about abnormal development and that she felt it was important for them to observe normal development because some of the nursing students have no or very limited exposure to children.

“I’m really pleased our students have had the opportunity to learn about normal development in children,” said Zeringue. “It has definitely enriched their pediatrics experience.”

SCLTC nursing student Tina Cranford said it was an eye-opening experience to observe at Little Leaders and see the developmental differences between the ages of the children there.

Rita Perilloux, director at Little Leaders, said the experience of hosting the nursing students has been great and that plans have been made to continue the collaboration for at least the next two years.

In addition to the experience at Little Leaders, Zeringue said Dr. Stuart Schultz and Dr. John McCrossen, obstetricians at Rue de Sante Women’s Center in LaPlace, have been very gracious in letting nursing students observe them in their practice. SCLTC students also rotate at St. James Parish Hospital, River Parishes Hospital, St. Charles Parish Hospital and at Marathon with the nurses there.

“I tell my students that they are getting more experience than any other student in the state,” said Zeringue.

She said the local exposure is invaluable and that Little Leaders and the area hospitals and clinics have been very accommodating to the students.