Nursing has a new home


By Glenn Battishill

Several nurses stand in a semicircle around a patient. One nurse instructs the others and as they begin to treat the patient one nurse second-guesses the other.

“Are you sure you know what you’re doing?” one nurse says to the other. The nurse shoots a dirty look at their underling.

“Are you sure you all are professionals?” says the concerned family member sitting a few feet away from the bed.

The nurse-in-charge turns and calmly assures the family member that they are, in fact, medical professionals and the procedure continues.

Behind one-way glass someone jots a note down and continues to observe the nurses.

After the procedure has finished the nurses gather in a conference room and the procedure is played back for them from multiple angles and the instructor behind the glass, as well as the “family member” from before, give the nursing students notes about the procedure they just completed.

This may seem like a hospital drama but it is a fairly commonplace scene at the new and fully functional Dwight Schar College of Nursing, a $15.5 million facility boasting nine classrooms, an entire floor of state-of-the-art simulation rooms, student lounges, offices and even a restaurant.

The building is state-of-the-art in every way from its $6.5 million in simulation technology and equipment to the design of the halls and doors to allow for the transport of hospital beds and finally to the platoon of medical training dummies. The dummies themselves range from the few low-fidelity dummies that are essentially just dummies to the many high-fidelity dummies that can sweat, suffer from seizures and even blink.

The simulation labs, combined with the high fidelity dummies, can run thousands of scenarios that can all be controlled from various control rooms across the facility. Additionally, each one of these labs is fully equipped with cameras and microphone equipment that record and can be played back in many of the school’s debriefing rooms designed to give students constructive criticism about their simulations. The dummies are not just adult dummies but the college also owns several child and infant dummies.

The college doesn’t have a computer lab but does have several computer stations and two laptop carts for classroom use. Nursing students are actually required to own a laptop computer, a first for any Ashland University program, most of which just require a computer.

Despite it’s impressive technology, the College of Nursing remains humble about it’s origin and the people who made the new building possible, specifically Dwight Schar, who donated $5 million to begin construction.

The school has several plaques and a bust thanking Schar as well as a few display cases that give a visual history of college of nursing.

Dean of the College of Nursing, Faye Grund, says the College of Nursing has had a smooth launch.

“Everyone has been amazing so far,” Grund said. “I anticipated that a least a few things might go wrong but everything has gone perfectly so far. Our students and faculty are really excited and we’ve already had faculty programs, like health science and dietetics, ask if they can use our simulation labs.”