National Science Olympiad Tournament

The Nursing Institute at Wright State University offered some fun [and educational] experiments and presentations to 34 of the 1800 students who came to Wright State University for the tournament, plus some accompanying parents.

Harriet Knowles, RN, MSN, Director of the Nursing Institute, came in wearing her original white uniform and cap. She talked with the students (many of whom were very interested in a nursing career) about the art of nursing. She showed “items” of the trade and presented information on how nursing has changed over the years. A short video made by nurses emphasized the level of caring and the importance of the nursing profession!

Students took the pulse and listened to the heartbeat of a child human patient simulator named Joey. They held a newborn simulator and compared its more rapid heartbeat to that of the child. They even got to work with “fake” wound dressings.

They held a $6000 baby harp seal robot – it responded to their touch and voices with movement and whimpers and batting its large black eyes. The Japanese inventor had seen a need in Alzheimer and Dementia patients for something to help calm them. This robot, called PARO, has been used world-wide in research and proves to be effective.

They experimented with “foggy” glasses to get a feel for impaired vision. They also had the opportunity to see if they truly get their hands clean when they wash by using GloGerm.

And then dysphagia – which means trouble swallowing. We had the students drink Kool-Aid with Thicket in 2 different thickenings after watching an x-ray video of people swallowing. They actually felt what it would be like to have that medical issue!

With over 100 career opportunities in the field of nursing, these students got an idea of new paths they might want to pursue. And a bag of freshly popped popcorn was a great ending to a fun hour!