Thomas chosen ECCC Dean of Healthcare Education

Patsy Freeman
Winston County Journal
662.773.6241 ext. 26

From press reports
Denita Thomas of Noxapater recently began her new duties as Dean of Healthcare Education at East Central Community College in Decatur.
Prior to her selection to the administrative position, Thomas served the past four years as a member of the College’s Associate Degree Nursing faculty, where her duties included teaching in the classroom, supervising students in the hospital setting, assisting students with learning in the skills lab, advising students, serving as coordinator for the LPN to RN Bridge program, and coordinating and teaching students in the simulation lab.
Thomas, who was selected ECCC’s Academic Instructor of the Year in 2011-12, was a member of the College’s first class of ADN graduates in 1996. She said it is with “great pride” that her path in life has led her to return as an instructor and now Dean of Healthcare Education.
In addition to serving as an ADN instructor at ECCC, Thomas works as a family practitioner with Quality Hospice in Philadelphia. 
Prior to her employment at the College in 2008, Thomas served as a family nurse practitioner with Neshoba Pediatric Medical Clinic in Philadelphia. She began her nursing career in 1996 with Magna Home Health of Philadelphia and continued at Louisville Group Homes-Hudspeth Center of Louisville.
“I have enjoyed all of my nursing opportunities,” Thomas said. “Since becoming a registered nurse 15 years ago, I have worked in areas of home health and mental health. As a family practitioner since 2007, I have experience in areas of pediatrics, hospice and education. I enjoy working with patients and students.”
Now that she is serving as healthcare dean, Thomas said she plans to continue the tradition of excellence in the healthcare programs at East Central.  “We are committed to the preparation of students to meet the healthcare needs of the community in a knowledgeable, caring and professional manner.”
In addition to Associate Degree Nursing, East Central offers Practical Nursing, Surgical Technology and EMT-Paramedic Technology.
Thomas holds the bachelor and master’s degrees in nursing from the University of Southern Mississippi. She recently completed the Mississippi Community College Leadership Academy in Jackson.
She received a NISOD (National Institute for Staff and Organizational Development) Excellence Award in 2011-12.
She is a member of the Pulmonary Hypertension Association, Phi Kappa Phi Honorary Society, Sigma Sigma Theta Tau International Honor Society of Nursing, Mississippi Nurses Association and American Nurses Association.
She also holds membership in ECCC’s Alumni and Faculty associations.
Thomas is married to Sergeant Major John Thomas and they have two children: Alex, a 2012 ECCC graduate now attending the University of Southern Mississippi; and Adam, a sixth-grader at Winston Academy.