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Program Overview


Program Overview

The School of Medical Laboratory Science is an 11-month, Monday through Thursday or Friday academic plan. It incorporates student laboratory activities with concurrent classroom and clinical practicum.

A student enrolled in Community Healthcare System School of Medical Science receives classroom and clinical training in CHS medical facilities and laboratories in Munster, East Chicago and Hobart.

Didactic Instruction

Our primary classroom sessions are held at Community Healthcare System, 800 MacArthur, Suite 19, Munster. Alternate classroom sessions may be held at Community Hospital, St. Catherine Hospital In East Chicago or St. Mary Medical Center in Hobart. 

Each course has a syllabus and required textbook(s). Presentation formats vary, and may include PowerPoint or other outlines, charts, diagrams and other resources. 

Classroom presentations covering management and administrative topics are intended to provide a broader, more complete experience of clinical laboratory operations; followed by 'shadowing' in several areas of administrative and non-clinical aspects of the profession.

Student Laboratory

The Student Laboratory is located in St. Catherine Hospital Laboratory, 4321 Fir St., East Chicago. Student laboratory activities in the early portion of the program provide practical, hands-on experience, with manual and semi-automated testing as a prerequisite to begin clinical department rotations.

Clinical Site

Clinical training is conducted in the Community Hospital Laboratory, 901 MacArthur Blvd., Munster. Initial clinical training includes phlebotomy, urinalysis, central (specimen) processing and microbiology set-ups, with more extensive clinical training periods in clinical chemistry, hematology and coagulation, microbiology, and blood bank. The student will be assigned to work with designated clinical trainers in each area, following day-to-day operation of the laboratory.

The goal for the student is to learn processes, instrumentation and perform laboratory testing.

During the clinical practicum -- and as the student displays acceptable or appropriate skill, instrument operation or technique to the designated trainer-- the student may perform testing under direct guidance of the trainer. The student is not expected to perform as a substitute for the trainer in the capacity of an employee. 

Teach-out Policy

If a catastrophic event should occur, rendering our core laboratory clinical site unavailable, our clinical training rotations under Teach-Out Policy MLS 149.02 may be completed at either or both of the other hospital clinical laboratories, St. Catherine Hospital or St. Mary Medical Center.

Alternate Clinical Facility Fact Sheets would be submitted to NAACLS, with explanation of the situation within 30 days of the changes, as specified in the Standard V.D. However, if all three clinical laboratory sites are unavailable, we could not guarantee clinical training placement.

Meet the Faculty

Faculty members of the Community Healthcare System School of Medical Laboratory Science include, in alphabetical order:

  • Tony Costello, Ph.D., Laboratory Site Director, St. Catherine Hospital
  • Diana Dingman, MS, MT(ASCP), SM, CLS, Supervisor, Hematology
  • Mary Sue Dolan, MT(ASCP), SC, Supervisor, Blood Bank
  • Dorothy Grisham, MT(ASCP), Supervisor, Phlebotomy
  • Robert Nelson, MHA, MT(ASCP), Laboratory Site Director, St. Mary Medical Center
  • Pravin Patel, Ph.D., D(ABBM), MT(ASCP), SM(AAM), Supervisor, Microbiology; Immunology
  • Helen Torres, MS, MT(ASCP), SC, Chemistry and Laboratory Supervisor, Community Hospital
  • Mary Wallace, MS, MT(ASCP), Program Director, School of MLS