The University of Charleston has received a $1.5 million gift.
It will fund, in part, a new simulation lab for the school's nursing program and physician assistant program. The lab features computer-operated manikins, which are life-sized anatomical human models. They mimic the needs of real life patients -- they blink, breathe, sweat and bleed; a manikin woman gives birth to another manikin that resembles a newborn.
In addition to the $250,000 earmarked for the lab, the gift will also fund $500,000 in nursing scholarships. The rest of the gift will help establish a new English as a Second Language program at UC.
UC President Ed Welch called the gift "transformational," saying it "helps us do things that we haven't been able to do before."
The donation was made from the estate of the late Robert Smith, a former Kanawha County Circuit Court judge.
Former state Supreme Court justice Tom McHugh, a friend of the family, said Smith arranged for the gift before his death to honor his wife Mary, a nurse who "knew the value of hand-washing before it came into vogue as it is today" and his beloved daughter Robyn, a foreign-language teacher who graduated from UC in 1975.
Smith worked as a judge in Kanawha County for 24 years.
Contact writer Shay Maunz at shay.ma...@dailymail.com or 304-348-4886.