Carol Velas, a registered nurse for 35 years, will direct Westmont’s Accelerated Bachelor of Science in Nursing program, which begins in January pending approval by the California Board of Registered Nursing.
The former senior manager for state licensing and accreditation at Chamberlain University in Chicago, Ms. Velas helped design Westmont’s nursing program, serving as a consultant for the initial feasibility study.
“I understand the needs of the diverse, vulnerable populations in Santa Barbara County and have developed the curriculum for this pre-licensure program,” Ms. Velas said. “I’ve integrated the theory of compassionate care so students will have tools to care for the whole patient throughout their lives and a variety of conditions and diseases.”
The college has renovated the first two floors of Westmont Downtown, the building it owns at 26 West Anapamu St., to house the state-of-the-art nursing program it will run with Cottage Health, according to a news release.
“Being the founding director of Westmont’s ABSN program gives me the joy of watching students study, graduate and work in the Santa Barbara community,” Ms. Velas said. “My passion as an educator is providing the faculty with the tools they need to teach a diverse student body and reach all learning styles. I will collaborate with faculty to provide the best learning environment available both at Westmont Downtown and in the clinical settings at Cottage Health.”
Ms. Velas earned a master of nursing from CSU Dominguez Hills and a doctor of education in educational leadership and policy from CSU Northridge.