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From left, Dr. Bradley Vaughn, NDSS 2013 graduates Kristy Fox, Kimberly Jackson, Ginger Gentry, and Sonya McNeill, and Mary Ellen Wells.
The NDSS bachelor’s degree, the first of its kind in the world, is offered through UNC Charlotte's College of Health and Human Service’s Kinesiology Department in collaboration with UNC Chapel Hill’s Department of Allied Health Sciences. This innovative, online degree program is designed to help meet the rapidly expanding need for neurodiagnostic and sleep technology professionals.
“These individuals are prepared to fill advanced roles in education, management, research, and leadership,” said Mary Ellen Wells, UNC Chapel Hill Assistant Professor and NDSS Program Director. “I am so proud of their accomplishments in this challenging program and look forward to seeing how their current and future endeavors move the fields of sleep and neurodiagnostics to new levels.”
The event on May 17 recognized the first seven students to successfully complete the degree requirements, which include a practicum and internship. The graduates were Michael B. Anderson II of Durham, NC; Tanisha S. Burke of Charlotte, NC; Jeannine A. Davenport of Seven Springs, NC; Kristy Michelle Fox of Vale, NC; Ginger Dawson Gentry of Carthage, NC; Kimberly N. Jackson of Rutherfordton, NC; and Sonya Anessia McNeill of Pembroke, NC.
“We are very proud of the program’s first class of graduates and we have high expectations for their future,” said Dr. Bradley Vaughn, Professor and Vice Chair of the UNC Chapel Hill Department of Neurology and Medical Director of the UNC NDSS program. “Several years ago we recognized the immense need to create a pathway to ensure our state citizens have access to excellent quality clinical sleep centers. The Class of 2013 will become educators and leaders in the growing field of sleep medicine in North Carolina and beyond.”
The celebration included words of commendation for the graduates and the new program from Lee K. McLean, PhD, Associate Dean and Chair, Department of Allied Health Sciences, UNC Chapel Hill, and Scott Gordon, PhD, Professor and Chair, Department of Kinesiology, UNC Charlotte. Several representatives from the NDSS Corporate Partner Program were also on hand to congratulate the students for their achievements. The Eddie and Jo Allison Smith Family Foundation funded the program’s initial development and last year issued a challenge grant, which the program successfully met to help diversify its funding sources.
For more information on the NDSS program, visit www.alliedhealth.unc.edu/ndss.