$5 million gift will help renovate SMU’s Memorial Health Center

Health Center

$5 million gift will help renovate SMU’s Memorial Health Center

SMU Memorial Health CenterSMU’s 52-year-old Memorial Health Center is set to receive a major upgrade, and it will be renamed in honor of the distinguished Dallas pediatrician and University alumnus whose foundation is making it possible.

The Dr. Bob and Jean Smith Foundation has given $5 million toward the Dr. Bob Smith Health Center. Planning for the Center’s renovation will begin this year.

The Memorial Health Center opened in 1960 as a 30-bed infirmary. At the time, the University’s enrollment was around 8,000. Today the Health Center serves as an outpatient facility for approximately 11,000 students, about 2,400 of whom live on campus.

Upon its completion in 2014, the Dr. Bob Smith Health Center will serve an estimated 3,650 students living on campus, including those who will live in the new Residential Commons complex to begin construction this spring. The complex, accommodating 1,250 students, in addition to SMU’s current residential halls, will enable the University to implement a two-year residency requirement for all first-year and sophomore students.

“Bob and Jean Smith have a long history of generous support for SMU priorities and have always kept the welfare of students uppermost in their minds,” said SMU President R. Gerald Turner. “This new gift will dramatically improve campus health care resources and provide support services that enable students to do their best academic work and fully enjoy the campus experience. We are deeply grateful for this gift, which will transform an important but outmoded facility into an up-to-date campus resource.”

SMU’s Health Center currently provides medical services for diagnosis and treatment of illness and injury, along with counseling and psychiatric services. The Center is staffed by full-time physicians, mental health counselors, registered nurses, pharmacists and laboratory and X-ray technologists. It also houses SMU’s Center for Alcohol and Drug Abuse Prevention.

“It is an honor to align the Dr. Bob and Jean Smith Foundation with SMU in combining superior academic facilities with excellent student life resources,” said Sally Smith Mashburn, Foundation president and treasurer and daughter of Dr. Bob and Jean Smith. “After all, one of SMU’s greatest responsibilities is to nurture the well-being of students.”

Improvements for the Dr. Bob Smith Health Center include updated floor plans that will increase the number of patient procedure rooms, counseling offices and private waiting rooms and will better serve the needs of students with disabilities. The renovation also includes upgrades to medical equipment and technology and enhancement of pharmacy and laboratory spaces. The expansion will provide group meeting spaces to promote collaboration among health care staff members.

“The renovations and upgraded equipment will greatly augment our ability to serve the SMU student community, complementing the high-quality staff members and specialists already in place,” said Patrick Hite, SMU Health Center executive director.

“This will be a lasting tribute to a physician and leader whose main concern was the health and welfare of others,” said Lori White, vice president for student affairs. “Now our students will be the beneficiaries not only of his generosity but also his foresight in understanding their needs and fostering a caring community.”

The Smith Foundation’s new $5 million gift counts toward the $750 million goal of SMU Unbridled: The Second Century Campaign, which as of December 2011 has raised more than $574 million to support student quality, faculty and academic excellence and the campus experience.

> Read more from SMU News
> Visit the SMU Memorial Health Center online

February 24, 2012|News|

How the SMU community can cope and help with holiday stress

Students in Fondren Science BuildingThe holiday season traditionally brings warm memories, shared friendship and a significant amount of stress for members of a university community. The pressures of exams, travel plans and preparations for family gatherings can overwhelm faculty, staff and students alike – especially new undergraduates facing their first college finals.

The Office of the Provost asks that all SMU community members be aware of signs of stress in themselves and those around them.

“In particular, I ask that you be aware of signs of stress among students, especially first-year students as they enter into their first set of final examinations,” wrote Provost Paul Ludden in an annual e-mail to SMU faculty and staff dated Nov. 15, 2011.

Any faculty or staff member who has concerns about a student and is not sure what to do is urged to refer to the University publication A Guide For Faculty and Staff for Recognizing and Responding to Students in Distress (PDF format) or to contact Dean of Student Life Lisa Webb, 214-768-4564. Students who feel overwhelmed by the stress of the season and finals can get help at the Memorial Health Center.

Faculty and staff members can share information securely and confidentially through the Dean of Students’ Caring Community Connections website (SMU ID and password required for access).

In addition, regular physical exercise at the Dedman Center for Lifetime Sports can help individuals stay fit for the season while relieving the stress it can bring.

Ludden also encouraged all SMU community members to “reach out to an individual who is separated from family and friends at this time and invite them to share some of your traditions and goodwill.”

Check in with these campus resources for referral information:

In addition, SMU Counseling and Psychiatric Services (CAPS) offers a variety of online resources for faculty, staff, students and parents in dealing with stresses ranging from anxiety and trauma to insomnia and homesickness.

November 17, 2011|News|

SMU urges inoculation as the 2011 flu season continues

Stock photo of a person receiving an immunizationAlthough SMU is not experiencing a large number of flu cases at this time, it is still flu season and the U.S. Centers for Disease Control says there are widespread cases in Texas, as well as neighboring Oklahoma and Louisiana.

Since flu can spread easily from person to person, the University urges all community members to take these preventative measures:

  • Get a flu shot. The shots are available at the SMU Health Center or local pharmacies. The Health Center offers immunizations on Tuesdays (1:30-3:30 p.m.) and Wednesdays (9-11 a.m.). Complete the Seasonal Flu Vaccine Form (PDF format) and bring it with you, along with your SMU ID.
  • Cover your cough with your elbow or sleeve and avoid touching your face.
  • Wash your hands regularly with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.

The University provides the shots at no cost for all benefit-eligible faculty and staff. Other faculty, staff and spouses may purchase shots for $25. Please bring cash or a check made out to the SMU Health Center.

> Visit the SMU Flu Preparedness site at smu.edu/flu
> Learn more about the Health Center’s flu shot program

February 7, 2011|News|

Seasonal stress: Recognizing, coping and helping

Students in Fondren Science BuildingThe holiday season traditionally brings warm memories, shared friendship and a significant amount of stress for members of a university community. The pressures of exams, travel plans and preparations for family gatherings can overwhelm faculty, staff and students alike – especially new undergraduates facing their first college finals.

The Office of the Provost asks that all SMU community members be aware of signs of stress in themselves and those around them. “In particular, I ask that you be aware of signs of stress among students, especially first-year students as they enter into their first set of final examinations,” wrote Provost Paul Ludden in an e-mail to SMU faculty and staff dated Nov. 15, 2010.

Any faculty or staff member who has concerns about a student and is not sure what to do is urged to refer to the University publication A Guide For Faculty and Staff for Recognizing and Responding to Students in Distress (PDF format) or to contact Dean of Student Life Lisa Webb, 214-768-4564. Students who feel overwhelmed by the stress of the season and finals can get help at the Memorial Health Center.

Faculty and staff members can share information securely and confidentially through the Dean of Students’ Caring Community Connections website (SMU ID and password required for access).

In addition, regular physical exercise at the Dedman Center for Lifetime Sports can help individuals stay fit for the season while relieving the stress it can bring.

Ludden also encouraged all SMU community members to “reach out to an individual who is separated from family and friends at this time and invite them to share some of your traditions and goodwill.”

Check in with these campus resources for referral information:

In addition, SMU Counseling and Psychiatric Services (CAPS) offers a variety of online resources for faculty, staff, students and parents in dealing with stresses ranging from anxiety and trauma to insomnia and homesickness.

December 1, 2010|News|

Flu shot clinics scheduled for Nov. 10-11

Stock photo of a man receiving a flu shotGet protected now for upcoming exams and holidays: The SMU Health Center will offer two 2010 flu shot clinics this week on the University’s main campus.

Faculty, staff members and students can get their shots 2-4:30 p.m. Nov. 10 and 9 a.m.-noon Nov. 11 in the Memorial Health Center.

The University pays for flu shots for all benefit-eligible faculty and staff. Other faculty and staff members, as well as spouses, may purchase shots for $25.

This year, a single shot will protect against H1N1, or the swine flu, and two other widespread flu strains that affected the Southern Hemisphere during the last flu season. Health officials recommend that everyone 6 months and older be vaccinated.

To shorten your wait at the flu clinic, take these steps:

• Complete the 2010-11 Flu Vaccine Form and bring it with you.
• Review the Health Center’s Health Information Privacy Policy (HIPAA).
• Review the flu vaccine information from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control.
• Bring your SMU ID or ID number to the clinic.

Keep up with the latest flu information, including upcoming clinic schedules, at smu.edu/flu.

November 10, 2010|News, Save the Date|
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