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Nicolet nursing students finished clinicals before COVID-19 outbreak, donate supplies to local clinics and hospitalsSubmitted: 03/26/2020
Story By Mazie Vincent

Nicolet nursing students finished clinicals before COVID-19 outbreak, donate supplies to local clinics and hospitals
RHINELANDER - Healthcare providers around the world are working in overdrive to try and contain the COVID-19 pandemic.

Due to the outbreak, Wisconsin's nursing shortage has shifted into the spotlight. So now the states nursing board is looking into emergency measures regarding senior nursing students.

"This will definitely make it more real, so they can address that from a more personal level." Dailey said.

Nicolet College Dean of Health Occupations Candy Dailey says her nursing students are prepared to hit the front lines.


Thanks to an earlier than usual spring term, senior students completed almost all clinicals before the Coronavirus outbreak.

"We are a little further ahead of the other technical college systems in our state so most of our students finished their clinicals," Dailey said.

Dailey says if the Board of Nursing allows more virtual clinical hours soon, 19 of her students will be able to graduate on April 24th.

"We've used virtual simulation in the past and it's a very enriching experience because the instructors can make the patient anything they want the patient to be."

Since all Nicolet's classes have been moved to virtual learning, Dailey jump-started a giveback initiative.

"Very early in the process we inventoried all of our supplies and we reached out to all of our partners in our district," Dailey said.

Nicolet donated gloves, surgical supplies, gowns, masks and much more to Aspirus, Ascension and Marshfield hospitals and clinics in the Northwoods.

"Right now it's more important that we support our partners and our hospitals and clinics with the protective equipment they need because they are on the front lines right now," Dailey said.

Dailey believes people in Northern Wisconsin are doing all they can to help fight the COVID-19 pandemic.

"In our little rural area in north eastern Wisconsin we have amazing healthcare facilities and wonderful, knowledgeable and safe healthcare professionals," Dailey said.

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 IN OTHER NEWS

CRANDON - The Forest County Humane Society works around the clock to help animals find forever homes. But taking care of those animals during their stay doesn't just take a lot of time; it takes a lot of money, too.

The shelter got a helping hand, thanks to a $35,000 grant from the ASPCA. It's part of an initiative to help brick-and-mortar shelters improve their animals' quality of life.

Shelter director Angie Schaefer says that money paid for 20 new cat-condos, fencing for two new dog yards, and several other much-needed supplies.

"We're small, we're in a small community, so to raise that kind of money to get these items would have been quite a task. For them to step in and do that for us is amazing," said Schaefer.

Schaefer said the extra yards will allow dogs to spend more time outside and socialize with each other.

If you're interested in volunteering or donating to the humane society, visit its website for more information.

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MADISON, WI - Cigarette smoking rates have dropped since Wisconsin's Smoke-Free Indoor Air Law went into effect 10 years ago.

In 2008, before the law passed, 20% of Wisconsin adults smoked cigarettes. By 2018, the rate had dropped to 16%. High school youth cigarette smoking rates dropped from nearly 21% in 2008 to nearly 5% in 2018.

State cigarette taxes were also increased during this time period and contribute to this reduction.

"Wisconsin is breathing easier today thanks to this law, but we know there are many people in our state who still smoke," said DHS Secretary-Designee Andrea Palm. "We urge smokers to take advantage of the programs available to help them to quit, especially now during the COVID-19 pandemic, as people who smoke are believed to be more susceptible to the virus, and can become severely ill with it."

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NORTHWOODS - Wisconsin's lakes have a lot to offer their visitors. But some, like aquatic invasive species, are unwelcome due to the damage they can cause to native ecosystems.

There's a growing effort to prevent, contain, and control the spread of these aquatic invasive species, especially this holiday weekend. As part of the Clean Boats, Clean Waters program, volunteers will be stationed across popular boat landings, doing inspections and educating boaters on how to properly clean their boats.

"Any type of holiday weekend, especially the fourth of July when there's a lot more boat traffic, there's an emphasis on getting more awareness out there," said DNR recreation warden Justin Bender.

Aside from volunteers, most boat landings also have information posted on aquatic invasive species and the laws regarding boat cleaning. Citations for not properly cleaning your boats typically run $200-300.

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RHINELANDER - The Pioneer Park Historical Complex is popular not only among tourists but also school field trips and Rhinelander natives.

The buildings give people an endless amount of historical background on the city and surrounding areas.

Like many city-owned places, the complex operates mainly on donations.

In the past the museum has had trouble accepting the donations of larger amounts and tax-deductible ones.

Until a recent partnership, the museum was unable to accept donations of large amounts and tax-deductible ones.

The new alliance with the Rhinelander Community Foundation led to the creation of a general fund.

Creators of the fund George and Sondra Juetten will match any donation up to $25,000 to the fund.

Museum director Kerry Bloedorn says the new partnership opens up more opportunities towards projects at the park.

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SIOUX FALLS, S.D. - President Donald Trump will begin his Independence Day weekend on Friday with a patriotic display of fireworks at Mount Rushmore, an event expected to draw thousands where masks and social distancing aren't required as coronavirus cases spike across the country.

Trump is expected to speak at the event, which has issued 7,500 tickets to watch fireworks that he says will be a "display like few people have seen."

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MADISON - Wisconsin health officials have confirmed nearly 600 more cases of COVID-19 in the state.

The state Department of Health Services said Friday that the state has now seen 30,317 confirmed cases since the pandemic began in March. That's up 579 cases from Thursday.

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ST. GERMAIN - The St. Germain Chamber of Commerce is hosting the first ever 'Sunday Funday.' 

On Sunday, July 5th, there will be two bands: Flying Blind from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. and Tony Ocean 2 p.m. to 5 p.m. 

St. Germain's Chamber of Commerce Exec. Director Penny Strom said she wants this to be an opportunity for people to get outside while being safe.

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