Cabarrus College of Health Sciences evolved from the Cabarrus County Hospital School of Nursing, founded by Louise Harkey in 1942 as a three-year diploma program to meet the demand for registered nurses during World War II. Louise Harkey was a registered nurse. She was the first Administrator for the Cabarrus Memorial Hospital School of Nursing (now CMC-NE) in Concord, North Carolina. Later the School of Nursing would be named in her honor. She lived most of her life in Concord.
Timeline (from CCHS History)
- February 2, 1942: Sixteen students enter the new nursing school.
- 1940s- 50s: Dormitory, recreation, auditorium and classroom space expansion to accommodate enrollment growth.
- 1963: National League for Nursing (NLN) awards accreditation to the school.
- 1973: Curriculum revision shortens program to two years; North Carolina Board of Nursing approves the school as the first two-year, hospital-based nursing diploma program in North Carolina.
- 1988: Nursing diploma program transformed to meet the standards for Associate Degree in Nursing.
- 1992: Officially renamed as the Louise Harkey School of Nursing to mark the school’s 50th anniversary and to honor its founder.
- 1996: The Louise Harkey School of Nursing becomes the cornerstone of the new Cabarrus College of Health Sciences, renamed in preparation for launching new allied health programs.
- 1997-2003: Medical Assistant, Surgical Technology, Nurse Aid, Occupational Therapy Assistant and Associate of Science programs added.
- 2004: The College partners with the Cabarrus Healthcare Foundation (formerly NorthEast Foundation) and the community to fund and build present facility on the campus of Atrium Health Cabarrus (formerly Northeast Medical Center/Carolinas HealthCare System NorthEast).
- 2005-2013: Additional programs added including Pharmacy Technology, certificate programs in Computed Tomography and Magnetic Resonance Imaging, Bachelor of Science degrees in Medical Imaging and Interdisciplinary Health Sciences, and an online RN-to-BSN degree.
- 2014: First master’s degree (Occupational Therapy) program added.
- 2020: Master of Science in Nursing program enrolls first cohort.
- 2021: Bachelor of Science in Health Sciences Leadership & Development program begins enrolling for spring 2022 semester.