CSUSM School of Nursing receives donation for program advancement

Marbella Ramirez, News Editor

CSUSM’s School of Nursing received a $200,000 grant gift from the Henry L. Guenther Foundation to advance the simulation lab at both the San Marcos and Temecula campuses. 

The department’s lab update will include Virtual Reality simulation gear, simulation mannequins and new industry level equipment for three lab complexes, which according to Wendy Hansbrough, director of the school of nursing, was where the money was most needed.

With this new technology, the nursing school hopes to advance their student’s knowledge in newborn assessment and more. This will be done through the inclusion of updated IV infusion pumps and syringe pumps, new vital signs machines, simulation pads and simulation capture audio/visual system for simulation rooms.

As for pricing of simulation mannequins, according to healthysimulation.com, a human patient simulator can range from as low as $10,000 to as high as $100,000. The donation itself is the first that the School of Nursing has ever received.

Due to the pandemic, the nursing program relied on practice with AR technology. This was one of the ways in which the faculty adapted to aid students with the application of their skills during the duration in which hospitals denied access to practice for students. While some believe this option was useful and worth the future investment, others think otherwise.

“In a lab, they have you practice something in a set way, what we learn when we go out into real situations is that every patient is different and they want it done differently. Every patient is going to want to eat differently and every patient is going to want to get up differently. Working out in real life is going to force us to adapt and that’s the difference between lab and field,” said nursing student, Andy Tran.

The nursing program is one of CSUSM’s most competitive programs, ranking #13 out of 131 programs throughout the state, according to RegisteredNursing.org. Their mission embodies the CSUSM culture by placing, “strong emphasis on delivering skillful, culturally sensitive nursing care.”

This ideal was demonstrated during the pandemic when students belonging to the program assisted in the administration of COVID-19 vaccinations. By helping at school districts, such as Valley Center-Pauma Unified School and helping at charity centers, CSUSM nursing students have made an impact in the community before earning their degree. 

Whether these simulation lab additions to the program make a difference in the lives of the future patients will only be known by waiting and observing. However one thing is for sure, CSUSM nursing school has kept true to their mission and will remain striving for excellence.