New RNs help the sick at the Health Center

The Richland Health Center has two new faces. Caroline White and Chance Reaves are registered nurses who both previously worked in area hospitals.

White, 66, was hired last semester.  As senior manager, she oversees the entire clinic.

Caroline White looks over her files. 

Caroline White looks over her files. 

“I have worked at Presbyterian [Hospital] in intensive care, Baylor in surgery, North Dallas High School as a school nurse, for the Visiting Nurses Association and at UT-Southwestern, as well as in pulmonary clinics and in home health,” she said.

White also worked as a senior vice president for 17 years at a company that did telephonic nursing. She was one of 80 nurses from all over the country who did telephone triage from their homes. With her new position at Richland, White said she’s at a point in her life where this job is a good fit.

“I’ve always wanted to get into a college, but for some reason that never really was something I could do at the time,” she said.  “But now, it’s a great time for me to do that. I’ve done high school and elementary school but never done college. Love being back in the academic world.  It’s very vibrant.”

One of the things high on White’s priority list is to get the clinic involved in wellness for employees and students.

“Breathing is huge. Breathing and drinking water can be the most amazing symptom relievers for a lot of things,” said White. “When people are sitting a lot in front of computers, there are a lot of ergonomics they can do very quickly, like standing up. If you’re really stressed about something, take two minutes and go walk to the water fountain to fill up your water bottle. Decompress that stress that’s in your brain and then come back.”

White has a Bachelor of Science Degree in nursing from the University of Texas. The advice she has for students is that “you’ll never lack for a job.”

“It’s a great, great profession. I love people. That’s why I love being in nursing,” said White. But she cautioned, “It’s not an easy profession to be in. You have to have a lot of patience. You can’t panic in any situation. You have to be good in crises. There are so many opportunities within.”

White said she loves the campus and the atmosphere. She is originally from Corsicana and has lived in Dallas for 40 years. She has six children and six grandchildren. Her daughter followed in her footsteps as a physician’s assistant.

Reaves, 32, previously worked at Parkland Hospital in the surgical trauma Intensive Care Unit (ICU). He started his new job at Richland last October.

“Working in a hospital doesn’t afford me the opportunity to spend as much time at home. I have two little kids,” Reaves said.  “I also like the aspect of community health nursing.  Being in a position to promote health and wellness across the entire continuum of ages is kind of what I want to do.”

Reaves describes the Richland campus as “awesome,” as far as the wildlife – the ducks and geese – and the diversity of the campus as “real interesting.”

Reaves spent a couple of years at the University of North Texas as a music major before deciding on a medical career. He studied online at Western Governor’s University.

Reaves’ main responsibility at the Health Center is patient care. He gives TB tests and takes care of sick students, faculty, employees and campus visitors.

“We’re the first responsibility as well,” Reaves said. “That means if there’s an emergency on campus, if there’s something medical that goes on, we help do those interventions.”

Chance Reaves

Chance Reaves

Reaves says the medications available in the Health Center are limited.

“We don’t actually prescribe any drugs,” he said.  “We offer over-the-counter medicines which is what we have in stock. We will supply those medications to patients that need them if they are exhibiting signs and symptoms.”

Ibuprofen, Tylenol, non-pseudoephedrine decongestants, Tums, Pepto-Bismol are usually available. Pregnancy tests, strep tests, blood sugar and urine testing are also available.

Reaves is originally from Johnson City, Texas. In addition to his job at the Health Center, he owns a wedding photography business.

The Health Center is located in Thunderduck Hall. It’s open weekdays Monday through Thursday from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. and Fridays from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.  For more information, visit