UCF’s Simulation, Technology, Innovation & Modeling (STIM) Center has received international accreditation from the Society for Simulation in Healthcare.

The STIM Center, based in the College of Nursing was granted full accreditation in the area of teaching and education from the Society for Simulation in Healthcare and the Council for Accreditation of Healthcare Simulation Programs. To receive accreditation, UCF demonstrated excellence in meeting the core standards in healthcare simulation education activity design, qualified educators, and continuous evaluation and improvement.

“This accreditation validates the efforts of our team in providing a high-quality education and ensures our nursing students become competent, compassionate providers,” says Mary Lou Sole, dean of the College of Nursing. “I am proud of their achievement, and know they will continue to be a pioneer in this exciting and emerging field.”

As a leader in healthcare simulation education, UCF attracts visitors from across the nation to learn from its operations, is home to Florida’s first — and one of only a few nationwide — healthcare simulation graduate programs, and is co-host of a national healthcare simulation conference in partnership with the National League for Nursing.

Currently, 10 percent of UCF’s nursing faculty are certified healthcare simulation educators. The team of experts also includes three of the world’s first certified advanced healthcare simulation educators, who also serve as board members of national and international healthcare simulation organizations, and one of the premier certified healthcare simulation operations specialists.

Located in Central Florida Research Park, adjacent to the main campus in Orlando, the STIM Center spans 1,500 square feet of low-fidelity and high-fidelity healthcare manikins, augmented-reality technology, and real-life hospital equipment and facilities. Each year, it provides more than 7,500 total contact hours of invaluable real-world training to undergraduate and graduate nursing students following best practices from the start to the de-briefing.

“The healthcare certificate program definitely prepared me for this new role,” says Valorie MacKenna, who graduates Aug. 1 with a Ph.D. in nursing and a healthcare simulation graduate certificate. She has already accepted a position as the director of simulation-based education at the University of Connecticut’s School of Nursing. “I have a feeling I’ll be opening up all my old assignments to help me.”

The STIM Center is also a hub of research activity, where nursing faculty and experts across disciplines are driving the future of healthcare simulation with published research in peer-reviewed journals and innovations such as the patented physical-virtual patient simulator.