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Donor Spotlight: Dallas couple’s gift will help shape the future of nursing

Posted: May 16, 2012

David and Nancy Temple

David and Nancy Temple

Like many alumni, David and Nancy Temple are proud of their Longhorn lineage. The two met on the campus of the University of Texas at Austin when he was a business major and she was about to enroll in the School of Nursing. And it’s a family affair: David and Nancy, their son and David’s brother and father are Life Members of the Texas Exes.

They also share a background in health care. David’s father received his pre-med degree from UT Austin and his mother was a nurse, and when she was a student in junior and senior high school, Nancy served many hours as a volunteer at Presbyterian Hospital in Dallas.

After returning to the Dallas area, the Temples began to build successful careers, he as a banker and she as a staff nurse in the intensive care unit at Baylor University Medical Center. But the ties to Austin were always strong and so was a desire to give back to the institution that had given them their start.

“The university prepared us so well for everything we’ve done in our careers, so as soon as we were able to begin to give back, we did,” said David. “Contributing to the School of Nursing just made sense to both of us, and so we asked: What is the greatest need the School has right now?”

Although a case could be made for several areas, David and Nancy recognized the importance of assisting students who are seeking advanced degrees, many in hopes of becoming teachers, researchers or nursing leaders who will need to meet the increasing challenges in clinical settings.

“In today’s ever-changing health care environment, it’s critical that nurses learn more about research, development and evidence-based practices,” Nancy said. “But they can’t do that without strong educational institutions like the University of Texas at Austin’s School of Nursing preparing them and strengthening their critical decision-making skills.”

Nancy also knows from experience how challenging it is to work full-time and attend graduate school: After almost 30 years in health care, she is now working on an advanced degree in nursing as she continues in her job at Baylor. That’s one reason why the decision to establish a fellowship to fund graduate students is so satisfying to the couple.

“Nurses are asked to do more now then ever before,” Nancy said. “And David and I are pleased to be a part of helping the School of Nursing prepare students to become the teachers and leaders that nursing needs.”