TCC Home Page             


Welcome CenterAcademicsWorkforce SolutionsNew StudentsCurrent StudentsFaculty and StaffDonorsCommunity
rollover the links above to activate the sub menus
Bb, Email, SIS
myTCC myTCC Library


News Releases @ TCC



Professor to develop pioneering healthcare simulations in respiratory therapy

Builds upon TCC’s Modeling & Simulation programming


HAMPTON ROADS, Va. – (Nov. 12, 2008) – Tidewater Community College announces its first recipient of the Batten Fellowship for Technological Innovation and Leadership, marking new terrain in support of faculty research in cutting edge, applied technology.

TCC’s first Batten Fellow – assistant professor Gary L. Cross, head of TCC’s Respiratory Therapy program since 1999 – is devoting the academic year to groundbreaking work in “medical simulation technology,” developing the first-ever simulator scenarios in respiratory therapy. Working with Sentara Healthcare, Cross aims to devise eight scenarios for education and training, which could be TCC’s first patentable work.


“This is exciting new territory for TCC,” says President Deborah M. DiCroce. “We owe this opportunity to a critical $1million gift from Frank Batten Sr. in 2005 to establish the Batten Program for Technological Innovation and Leadership at TCC.”

“I expect we’ll make Mr. Batten proud by leveraging his investment in applying the best technology advances in the academic setting, and propelling TCC to the national stage in modeling and simulation,” adds DiCroce.  

“I am so pleased to provide support for a project that is unique and cutting edge,” says Batten. “It’s rewarding to see TCC advance in important areas of applied research and faculty development.”

TCC has expanded its programming in modeling and simulation in response to workforce needs, and has been very aggressive in adopting modeling and simulation as a teaching strategy. In fact, many of TCC’s 13 healthcare areas use simulation in coursework, including nursing, emergency medical services and respiratory therapy. Simulators provide lifelike, hands-on practice without risk to real patients.

The college’s work with human patient simulators made it a perfect beta-test site for medical training equipment company METI (Medical Education Technologies Inc.) and its latest diagnostic software. That testing will coincide with the new Batten Fellow’s project, says Michael Summers, TCC vice president for academic and student affairs. Summers adds that while there are 80 patented scenarios for nursing, TCC’s upcoming scenarios will be the first in the respiratory field.

“My project involves working with state-of-the-art simulation technology, with purpose,” explains Cross. “The purpose is to improve the student learning environment with technology, which will result in improved student learning – a goal of the Batten Fellowship.

“Aligning with TCC’s work in strategic technology leadership and partnering, this project utilizes technology so new that we will be the first in the United States to use it. We will also be beta testing the MetiVision system working with METI and recommending improvements to increase its educational impact and effectiveness,” adds Cross, excited to be TCC’s first Batten Fellow. The project also has support from Hamilton Medical Inc., a major manufacturer of respiratory equipment.

In addition to the Batten Fellowship, the Batten Program for Technological Innovation and Leadership at TCC features four Batten Faculty Professional Development Centers. The centers offer dedicated professional development spaces at the Norfolk, Chesapeake, Portsmouth and Virginia Beach campuses for faculty access to state-of-the-art instructional technology, software and resource materials.


Laurie White
Media Relations

Celebrating its 40th year, Tidewater Community College - the largest provider of higher education and Workforce Solutions services in Hampton Roads - enrolls nearly 40,000 students and has the second largest undergraduate student body in Virginia. The 23rd highest producer of associate degrees in the nation, and the 35th largest community college, TCC is among the 20 fastest-growing large two-year institutions in the United States. Founded in 1968 as a part of the Virginia Community College System, the college serves the South Hampton Roads region with campuses in Chesapeake, Norfolk, Portsmouth and Virginia Beach as well as the TCC Jeanne and George Roper Performing Arts Center in Norfolk’s theater district, the Visual Arts Center in Olde Towne Portsmouth and a regional Advanced Technology Center in Virginia Beach. Forty-six percent of the region’s residents attending a college or university in Virginia last fall were enrolled at TCC. For more information, visit