Sanford Health, Tri-College University Opening Training Center in 2020

Students will get to practice on mannequin simulators

Sanford Health Medical Center on Broadway partners with Tri–College University to turn the Children’s Hospital into a training center.

It’s a marriage between five of Fargo–Moorhead’s universities and one of its largest medical facilities.

“We’re going to have something that’s truly fantastic. It’s believed to be one of the first, if not the first of its kind, where multiple campuses are working together on something like this in the nation,” said Tim Flakoll, Tri-College University provost.

Sanford Medical Center’s Broadway location will open up a 17,000 square foot space where college students interested in the medical field can learn using mannequin simulators.

These simulators will put students in real life scenarios from taking vitals to providing trauma care.

But they won’t always be able to expect the exact same routine.

“We may change it just a little bit so at least they can’t go by memorization but they can go by different cues and maybe change how they approach something. It’s all about creating a safe environment that gets to the highest level of student accomplishment,” said Scott Engum, Sanford Health pediatric surgeon.

The mannequins come in a variety of ages, genders and races.

Plans are already in the works to even have theater students act as patients to add a challenge.

“It really does have that tension, that psychological tension of trying to care for someone when they’re in excruciating pain,” Flakoll said.

Even though practicing medicine won’t be the easiest, there will also be debriefing rooms and classroom space so students can discuss how they did in the simulation.

Surgeons say they hope a different kind of learning environment will also help students to feel more comfortable.

“If they’re confident here, when they go back into the clinical environment, they will probably stay closer to the bed because they know what’s going on and they may actually be able to give input where right now they feel they don’t know what’s going on and they become a wallflower. They step back because they’re apprehensive,” Engum said.

Sanford’s training center will also be used as a regional resource for fire departments, ambulances or the armed forces.

Construction on the center will begin in 2019 and is expected to be a year–long project.