State grant to fund additional lab in nursing expansion project


Professor watching nursing simulation
Nursing instructor Tiffani Leyden monitors a nursing simulation exercise from behind a one-way mirror in the renovated Finger Lakes Community College nursing wing. Leyden, who also recorded the session, later debriefed with students about their response to the symptoms a computerized manikin presented during the exercise.

Finger Lakes Community College has received a $1.5 million grant to add an additional science lab to the Sands Family Center for Allied Health now under construction at the main campus.

FLCC broke ground on the $7.2 million expansion and renovation project in June 2021. SUNY later notified FLCC that the College would receive $1.5 million through the SUNY Workforce Development Initiative, which funds projects designed to train people for high-demand jobs. The state has identified health care, and nursing in particular, as a top priority.

The project is opening in stages. The renovated area on the third floor of the main campus, which features a new nursing simulation lab, opened in August 2021. The expansion includes more nursing lab and instructional spaces and a fourth floor lobby; it will open in summer 2022. 

Our students are already experiencing an enhanced educational experience in our newly renovated nursing space. The expansion, now nearly complete, and this additional science lab will provide even greater flexibility and capacity as we prepare students for health care careers,” FLCC President Robert Nye said.

The additional 1,800-square-foot science lab and instructional space will be built next to the new lobby and open in 2023. The lab will be equipped with HyFlex technology allowing for simultaneous in-person and remote instruction to support students in health care programs.

When complete, the Sands Family Center for Allied Health will allow FLCC to accept 50 percent more students in the two-year registered nursing program and launch a one-year licensed practical nursing program. 

With the new facilities, FLCC will be able to accept students into the registered nursing program in both the fall and spring. The application for the first spring class, in January 2023, will open in early May on the College website at 

The College will also use the center to provide certificate training for nurse assistants, home health aides and phlebotomy technicians. A federal grant currently covers most or all of the tuition for these three short-term certificate programs. Anyone interested in enrolling can learn more at or (585) 785-1670.

The Sands Family Center for Allied Health is named for the chief donor, the Sands Family Foundation, which contributed $3 million to the project. 

In addition to the Sands Family Foundation gift, the FLCC Student Corporation has pledged $250,000 while the FLCC Foundation and the FLCC Association will each contribute $200,000. These gifts were matched by New York State. The additional grant brings the project total to $8.7 million.

Author: Lenore Friend

Lenore Friend is the director of public relations and communications at FLCC and the college's liaison with Finger Lakes TV. Contact her at (585) 785-1623 or

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