A foundation created by a thrifty farmer in Grant County is making charitable gifts to both the Washington State University College of Nursing in Yakima and the WSU Elson S. Floyd College of Medicine in Spokane.
Thanks to the generosity of the Paul Lauzier Charitable Foundation, the College of Nursing in Yakima will soon have a high-tech mannequin for use in simulation-based education, while the Elson S. Floyd College of Medicine will have abdominal exam trainers and computer workstations for its Virtual Clinical Center on the Spokane campus. Last year the College of Medicine received a gift from the foundation to equip exam rooms in that center, where medical students practice performing clinical exams.
“WSU is grateful to the Paul Lauzier Charitable Foundation for its strong support of our health sciences programs,” said Daryll DeWald, Ph.D., chancellor of WSU Health Sciences Spokane. “Simulation is a proven method in health sciences education, providing students with low-risk opportunities to hone their skills and techniques.”
With its $70,000 gift, the College of Nursing in Yakima will purchase a Sim Man Essential mannequin, which breathes, blinks and has heart sounds. Students learn to evaluate, diagnose and practice skills in airway, breathing, cardiac and circulation management. The mannequin is also wireless, enabling students to practice emergency response outside a clinical setting.
The College of Medicine will use its $30,000 gift to buy two abdominal exam trainers, which can be used as teaching aids and testing instruments. The trainers will enable students to practice palpation, auscultation and percussion elements of abdominal and gastrointestinal examinations. The college will also purchase 20 computer workstations that will allow for student tablet computers to be used as simulated electronic medical record devices.
Paul Lauzier was the son of French immigrants, whose family raised sheep in the Yakima Valley, then in Grant County. After he returned from serving in the Army during World War II, Lauzier assumed responsibility for the family business. He acquired land and eventually branched into cattle and irrigated farming. He never married, lived frugally and gave to many charitable causes during his lifetime. He died in 1995.
“We are pleased to further Mr. Lauzier’s legacy of charitable giving with gifts supporting the important work being done by the students, faculty and administrators at the WSU College of Nursing as well as the Elson S. Floyd College of Medicine,” said Lauzier Foundation Trustee Michael Rex Tabler.
Over the past 20 years the Paul Lauzier Charitable Foundation has provided financial support totaling more than $10.5 million to a wide range of community development causes, youth programs and projects in health and public safety, education and agriculture. Gifts to WSU total more than $1.38 million. In addition, the Paul Lauzier Scholarship Foundation has awarded 4,788 educational scholarships to Grant County high school graduates attending colleges and trade schools in Washington. WSU students have received more than $2.1 million in scholarship support from the Lauzier foundation.
Chancellor DeWald noted that both the College of Nursing and College of Medicine have robust programs to prepare health care professionals for careers working in rural areas and with under-served populations. “We think WSU’s outreach and approach fits with Mr. Lauzier’s priorities in life, and his foundation’s activities after his death,” he said.