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CSUSM nursing students work with a manikin in the simulation lab. The university has received a $200,000 gift to improve its existing nursing technology and equipment. Photo by Andrew Reed
CSUSM nursing students work with a manikin in the simulation lab. The university has received a $200,000 gift to improve its existing nursing technology and equipment. Photo by Andrew Reed
Cities Community News Region San Marcos

CSUSM receives $200,000 gift to expand nursing program  

SAN MARCOS — Cal State San Marcos recently received a $200,000 gift from the Henry L. Guenther Foundation, which the university is putting toward its nursing simulation and skills labs in San Marcos and Temecula.

The funding will be used to equip three lab complexes with advanced technology and equipment, including virtual reality, simulation manikins and industry-standard instruments that will mirror real health care settings.

According to Dr. Wendy Hansbrough, director of the university’s School of Nursing, the program utilized the funds where they saw the most need.

This includes updated IV infusion pumps and syringe pumps, new vital signs machines, simulation pads, simulation capture audio/visual system for simulation rooms, equipment that will help students learn better ways to do health assessments on newborns and more.

“We also have been moving toward a more reflective education for our students. We always do some of that, but we wanted to advance that capability in our laboratory,” Hansbrough said. “To do this, we want to be able to capture and easily distribute to each student their own videos, so they can open up those videos on their own laptop and they can then look at a rubric that describes what the learning outcomes would be for that scenario and they would be able to watch themselves and reflect on their own performance and then make adjustments.”

Each year, CSUSM graduates about 230 nursing students from its School of Nursing program, according to Hansbrough. This funding aims to increase the quality of these students’ learning experiences and better prepare them for their careers.

“We know there’s a critical need for nurses in California,” said Susanne Sundberg, chairman of the Guenther Foundation Board of Directors. “The Board of Directors is confident that the simulation and skills lab as funded by the Henry L. Guenther Foundation will help increase a qualified nursing workforce in the state.”

The Henry L. Guenther Foundation is a nonprofit charitable organization based in Seal Beach.

“We’re really grateful because this was a terrific gift. We haven’t had this kind of a gift, and so it really meant a lot to us. And I can’t speak exactly for the faculty, but I can tell you that they’ve been wanting to upgrade,” Hansbrough said. “And I think probably the most important thing is that it really does help us to provide the most up-to-date, realistic clinical experience we can in our laboratories for our students.”

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