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Support From the McMahon Foundation of Lawton Exceeds $1.5 Million for OU Projects, Programs



FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                        

CONTACT: OU Public Affairs, (405) 325-1701

LAWTON – Continuing its longstanding commitment to the University of Oklahoma and to the Lawton area, the McMahon Foundation has made a generous grant to help local nursing students simulate real-life patient scenarios.  The grant brings the McMahon Foundation’s total giving to the University to more than $1.5 million, OU President David L. Boren announced during the OU Regents’ meeting in Lawton.

The McMahon Foundation’s recent $160,000 grant provides support for a simulation practice room for OU’s Lawton-based nursing program, located at Cameron University.  The room will feature a wireless patient simulator, which will enable OU nursing students to experience complex cases in a realistic yet safe health care environment.  The room also will include a digital audio-visual management system, which provides faculty and students the opportunity to review and evaluate the performance of a simulated scenario.  The simulation room is expected to be ready for use by the spring 2011 semester.

“The University is deeply grateful for the McMahon Foundation’s ongoing support,” Boren said. “For four decades, the foundation has helped OU better serve its students and strengthen its programs, many of which have a direct impact on communities in southwestern Oklahoma.

“OU is committed to enhancing rural health care by offering advanced degree options to OU nursing students and a family medicine residency program in the Lawton area.  Many students who complete these programs go on to work for hospitals and health care agencies in Lawton and surrounding areas,” he noted.

Cameron University President Cindy Ross wrote a letter of endorsement to the McMahon Foundation on behalf of OU’s Lawton-based nursing program, which is the only bachelor’s degree-granting nursing program in southwestern Oklahoma.  About 90 percent of graduates from the Lawton nursing program remain in the area after graduation.

“Speaking on behalf of the trustees, the McMahon Foundation is proud and excited to support the OU College of Nursing at Cameron University,” said Dr. Charles Graybill, a 1943 OU medical graduate and chairman of the McMahon Foundation. “The Lawton area is growing by leaps and bounds, and so there is a great need for qualified nurses to help meet the current and future health care demands of this community.”

The McMahon Foundation was incorporated in 1940 by Eugene McMahon, who earned his bachelor’s degree in 1915 from OU, and his mother, Louise, to promote the well-being of residents in Comanche County, where Lawton is located. 

In addition to Dr. Graybill, other officers include Michael R. Dixon, executive director; Kenneth Bridges, vice chairman; and Gale Sadler, secretary-treasurer.  Trustees are Ronald E. Cagle, M.D., Kenneth E. Easton and Michael Mayhall, all of whom are OU alumni. Orville D. Smith also is a trustee.The foundation supports such areas as education, human services, arts and youth programs.

OU journalism programs have been a special beneficiary of McMahon Foundation grants, including longstanding support for McMahon Foundation Memorial Scholarships, 25 of which are awarded yearly to students majoring in print or broadcast news; the McMahon Centennial Professorship of News Communication – the first endowed faculty position in journalism at OU; and for the Gaylord Hall building project.

Additionally, the McMahon Foundation offered the Southwest Oklahoma Family Medicine Residency in Lawton – one of three such residency sites operated by the OU College of Medicine’s Department of Family and Preventive Medicine – a one-to-two challenge grant to help purchase an electronic health record along with several other needed clinical educational tools. The electronic health record is an important but expensive clinical tool that helps prepare family physicians in providing   state-of-the-art primary care.

Recent graduates, alumni, faculty and staff, and members of the Lawton community raised $150,000, which was matched by $75,000 from the McMahon Foundation in 2007.  The family medicine residency program, which has its own clinic in Lawton, trains future family physicians, many of whom provide important primary health care for the citizens of southwest Oklahoma.

The McMahon Foundation is a member of OU’s Seed Sower Society, honoring donors whose gifts to OU total $1 million or more.

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