University Celebrates Construction of Health & Life Sciences Building

University Celebrates Construction of Health & Life Sciences Building

(PHOTO) During a foundation celebration on Aug. 22, Shenandoah University President Tracy Fitzsimmons (center), board of trustee members, alumni, donors, construction and architectural representatives, distinguished guests, students, faculty, staff and community supporters sign their names on one of the steel I-beams that will become the framework for the new Health & Life Sciences Building on main campus, a lasting foundation for this new campus footprint.

As construction progresses on Shenandoah University’s Health & Life Sciences Building, the university community gathered together on Aug. 22 for a foundation celebration to honor the opportunities and possibilities provided by this new addition to campus.

“What a great time to be at Shenandoah University,” said President Tracy Fitzsimmons, Ph.D. “This story isn’t really about this building. It’s about our amazing students that go on and dream about making the world a better place. It’s about a commitment to education on the part of our faculty, staff and trustees to turn out the very best students anywhere, who are compassionate, caring citizens who can talk broadly about world politics or just to listen with an appropriate ear. These are going to fabulous learning spaces, where students and faculty can congregate together, and where they will dream dreams and study.”

Dr. Fitzsimmons, members of the Shenandoah University Board of Trustees and honored guests signed their names on one of the steel I-beams that will become the framework for the building — a lasting foundation of this new campus footprint.

“This building will be a very significant addition to the Shenandoah campus,” said Chairman of Shenandoah University’s Board of Trustees Andrew Ferrari. “It’s going to prepare students not only to hit the ground running as they enter the workforce but also to adapt to the opportunities and challenges they’ll face in the future. In the health and sciences area, change is inevitable, and we embrace it.”

When it opens during the fall 2014 semester, the 71,000 square-foot Health & Life Sciences Building will house standard and active-learning classrooms; teaching labs; a 2,000 square-foot, 16-table cadaver lab; a nursing skills lab and simulation suite; a large meeting space; and classroom technologies that support active learning.

The building will serve as home to Shenandoah’s athletic training, biology, chemistry, nursing, respiratory care and pre-health programs; graduate health programs will access the 16-bed cadaver lab on the third floor of the building.

The opportunity to have all of the university’s undergraduate health programs under one roof on main campus means better service to students and a more collaborative learning process between all of the programs.

The unique lantern design of the building, created by Earl Swensson Associates (ESa) of Nashville, Tenn., will welcome students and faculty as a place of learning. Describe as “a beacon of light” to the campus, the Health & Life Sciences Building will become the academic living room on main campus.

With the overwhelming demand for enrollment in the life and health sciences, educating the next generation of healthcare professionals is critical to meeting that industry’s future demands. Shenandoah University and its board of trustees is raising the bar with this new facility and working to be proactive in this vein. The institution is a regional and national leader in the health sciences, and the facility will help it remain at the forefront of health and science education.

In addition, the Health & Life Sciences Building will continue to foster the rewarding relationships the university has built within the local community. It will act as a meeting place for organizations, businesses and healthcare affiliates throughout the region.