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WITC students place third in statewide healthcare case competition

(1/25/2017) A team of Wisconsin Indianhead Technical College students placed third and won $1,000 at the Interprofessional Healthcare Case Competition organized by Wisconsin AHEC (Area Health Education Centers) earlier this month in Wisconsin Dells.

Third-place team members representing Northwest AHEC are WITC-Ashland associate degree nursing students Megan Colberg of Cornucopia and Della Thompson of Ashland and a member of the Bad River Tribe. Thompson is double majoring in gerontology-aging services professional.

Their win marks the first time a technical college team has placed in the top three at the healthcare case competition.

"It really speaks to the quality of our students and the education they’re getting here at WITC," said Kate Siegler, WITC divisional dean-allied health.

"I could not be more proud of the hard work Della and Megan put into this case competition," said Tina Hagstrom, WITC-Ashland associate degree nursing instructor. "They went over and above required coursework. This demonstrates their dedication to the profession."

Northwest Wisconsin AHEC recruited and supported Colberg and Thompson for the event. Executive Director Brad Gingras arranged local healthcare professionals for them to meet with, reviewed their progress and coached them on their oral and visual presentation.

"Megan and Della worked so hard to create and present a professional, well-designed presentation. Their commitment to compete at a high level was exceptional," said Gingras.

Kevin Stranberg from Memorial Medical Center, Reba Rice from NorthLakes Community Clinic, and Bad River Health and Wellness Center also provided coaching to help them learn how institutions can collaborate.

"The community support really made a difference in their success," said Siegler. "Megan and Della worked very hard to take what they learned and develop a winning plan."

Colberg and Thompson competed against eight finalist teams chosen from 34 that applied. The teams were made up of students in a health profession program from private and public universities across the state with each of the seven Wisconsin AHEC regions represented. Colberg and Thompson were provided a healthcare case scenario and their charge was to create a vision of how to involve local and regional institutions along with community resources in an integrated plan that uses interprofessional teamwork to improve patient care. They presented their findings and recommendations for collaboration to a panel of judges on the competition day.

Wisconsin AHEC designed the healthcare case competition to show students the complexity of the healthcare delivery system and the need for collaboration between different healthcare professionals.

The WITC-Ashland team is among winning teams from Carroll University who placed first and Concordia University of Wisconsin who took second.

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A nationally top-ranked college and a designated 2016 Military Friendly ® School, WITC serves the educational and career needs of more than 25,000 residents of Northwestern Wisconsin each year. With multiple campuses, WITC offers career-focused associate degree programs, technical diplomas, short-term certificates, customized business training, and a wide array of courses for personal or career enrichment. WITC is a member of Wisconsin Technical College System and is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission ( For more information, call 800.243.WITC or visit WITC is an Equal Opportunity/Access/Affirmative Action/Veterans/Disability Employer and Educator.