Concordia Announces Sanford Heimarck School of Health Professions

President Craft speaks at a news conference announcing the Sanford Heimarck School of Health Professions

Concordia announced today it will rename its School of Health Professions the Sanford Heimarck School of Health Professions in honor of Sanford Health’s support of Concordia health professions education and its efforts to meet the critical health workforce needs of the region.

Beginning this month and extending over the next 10 years, Sanford is continuing its historic and defining giving to support Concordia health professions education." 

– President William Craft

Sanford Health has joined Concordia to build on our long-established commitment to educating future healthcare professionals. Sustaining that commitment, beginning this month and extending over the next 10 years, Sanford is continuing its historic and defining giving to support Concordia health professions education. In addition to this gift, Sanford will also carry on that commitment with a gift of the land and building where the 8th Street Sanford Clinic now stands. These game-changing gifts are great news for Concordia health professions education and for healthcare providers, and, equally, they are great news for all who will receive healthcare in our region from outstanding practitioners. Concordia will begin renovations on the Sanford Clinic building adjacent to Concordia’s campus beginning in 2022.

“Sanford’s deep commitment to health professions education and the work of Concordia continues to be a game changer in our region,” said Dr. William Craft, president of Concordia. “To honor this Concordia-Sanford partnership and to recognize the founder of Concordia’s healthcare leadership program, Ted Heimarck, we will name this enterprise the Sanford Heimarck School of Health Professions. The renovated building will be named the Heimarck Center.”

A steadfast champion of others, Dr. Theodore Heimarck’s legacy is celebrated for the generosity of his spirit and the depth and passion of his convictions. Dr. Heimarck founded the healthcare administration program in 1966 and led the program for three decades, until his retirement in 1998. The program has fostered countless graduates who have served in significant healthcare leadership roles and has shaped healthcare by improving the human condition, both in the Midwest region and around the globe.

“This gift moves the college forward in a significant way in its work to fulfill its mission of influencing the affairs of the world through our students,” said Mary Ranum, chair of Concordia’s Board of Regents. “The students who had the benefit of being taught by professor Ted Heimarck have already been doing that for many decades and it is clear that the future students who will graduate after being trained at the Sanford Heimarck School of Health Professions will continue to expand that influence for many years to come.”

Over the past several decades, Concordia has developed strong healthcare partnerships in the Fargo-Moorhead area. The long-standing relationship with Sanford offers clinical opportunities in hospital and clinic settings for Concordia students.

“With a record demand for healthcare services, we are at a significant crossroad in our ability to meet workforce challenges. This is why Sanford has historically invested in Concordia College and will continue to do so in the future,” said Bryan Nermoe, president and CEO of Sanford Fargo. “Over the next 10 years, the continuation of our support will expand Concordia’s health career programs to meet the rising demand for healthcare workforce in our region and improve the health and quality of life for all of us and our loved ones.”

In Fall 2020, Concordia unveiled a strategic formation of three schools, one college and a new tuition pricing model. In addition to the Offutt School of Business, the college restructured to create the School of Health Professions and the School of Arts and Sciences. Sanford’s ongoing support will be used to create new educational opportunities, including a simulation space for nursing education and a human performance laboratory.

Programs within the School of Health Professions include clinical laboratory science, exercise science, food/nutrition/dietetics, healthcare leadership, nursing, social work, and preprofessional advising programs for athletic training, chiropractic, dentistry, medicine, occupational therapy, optometry, pharmacy, physical therapy, physician assistant, and veterinary medicine.

“Our doctors, nurses, and other healthcare professionals provide mentorship and training, giving students the hands-on guidance that students need as they develop their skills,” Nermoe said. “The programs at the Sanford Heimarck School of Health Professions will prepare students for careers in a wide array of healthcare, community wellness, and social services settings – from leadership, to research, to direct patient care.”

Dr. Susan Larson, provost and dean of the college, believes that the Sanford Heimarck School of Health Professions’ programs and cutting-edge learning opportunities in enhanced facilities will ensure students are ready for the workforce as they apply their classroom learning at internships and through clinical experiences. With the establishment of interprofessional and interdisciplinary education from programs as the guiding vision, students will be prepared to ethically and innovatively lead diverse teams and multifaceted health systems, she said.

"Now more than ever, the world needs Cobbers who will influence the affairs of the world through their skills, passion, and deep commitment to caring for the health and well-being of others,” Larson said. “With this continued support from Sanford Fargo, our students will learn, work, and lead.”

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