The University of San Francisco has announced an $8 million estate gift from alumnus Dolores M. Staudenraus to provide future students with educational opportunities.
The gift will be designated for scholarships, with a preference for students from Stockton and the Central Valley area, where Staudenraus was raised. With her gift, Staudenraus had hoped to provide future students with the kind of educational experience she enjoyed as an undergraduate nursing student at USF.
Born in North Dakota, Staudenraus grew up in Stockton, received her undergraduate degree in nursing from USF in 1954, and later earned a master's degree in public health at the University of California, Berkeley. During the Vietnam War, she served as a battlefield nurse in the largest combat hospital in Da Nang, treating American GIs wounded during the siege of Khe Sanh and rising rapidly through the ranks, including serving as a recruiting officer for the U.S. Navy nurse corps. During her time in the Navy, Staudenraus began to invest in real estate and continued to do so for the rest of her life. She retired from the Navy after attaining the rank of captain and returned to Northern California, where she worked as a director for the U.S. Public Health Service.
"We are deeply honored and grateful to Dolores for her faith in USF and her generosity," said Fr. USF president Paul J. Fitzgerald, S.J. "Throughout her life, she demonstrated repeatedly what it means to give, to care for others, and to live with passion, conviction, and values. Her legacy gift will provide generations of students with access to the Jesuit education she treasured."