Open House Held in the New Health Sciences Building for CNHP Faculty and Staff
September 1, 2022
An open house on August 25, 2022 welcomed the College of Nursing and Health Professions (CNHP) faculty and staff to their new academic home, Drexel's Health Sciences Building. Attendees had the opportunity to take a self-guided tour of nursing and health profession labs and classrooms hearing about how these advanced spaces will augment the academic experience for all students. “We educate leaders for the future, we discover and create new knowledge, and we practice our individual disciplines in order to make the world a better place. Seeing you all here today reminds me of our greater purpose as a college to assure health, service and wellness for everyone, locally, nationally and globally,” announced Dean Laura N. Gitlin, PhD.
Before Provost Paul Jensen welcomed CNHP employees to University City, Gitlin gave the history of the land on which the building sits and the people connected to it. Jensen spoke about the importance of connecting many of the University’s health-related disciplines within the Health Sciences Building. He commented how excited the University is to have CNHP on main campus and espoused the benefits this 12-story, academic space offers the College of Nursing and Health Professions, and next year, the College of Medicine and School of Biomedical Sciences and Professional Studies.
CNHP’s interim dean, Ann Branchini, PhD, who holds a doctorate in nursing with a focus on leadership, took a few minutes to address attendees. Excited to step into this new home, Branchini is eager to get to work supporting students, faculty and professional staff. “This is a critical time in the history of CNHP, and I am excited about the opportunity we share to forge our identity and secure the future of our programs and our students on this campus,” Branchini articulated.
With the support of university leadership, and Gitlin as its determined champion, the Health Sciences Building can offer opportunities for interdisciplinary education in a facility that affords students, faculty and professional staff the best possible environment for continued development and growth. Over 1,450 tradespeople participated in the building with over 11K cubic yards of concrete, 5K light fixtures, 600 wood door frames and so much more—everything remained on track, despite a global pandemic, because of the dedication of many teams. Gitlin recognized three individuals who were exceptional in their management: Mary Gallagher Gordon, PhD, vice dean of CNHP’s Strategic Operations and Academic Services, Terri Schmitt, director of Planning, and Nancy Trainer, associate vice president and university architect. “Our trio of mighty leaders has led through immeasurable uncertainty, going far above and beyond their job descriptions to make sure this space is exemplary for the Drexel community,” Gitlin stated.
At the end of the event, Gitlin invited everyone there to take the self-guided walking tour previewing classrooms and labs where faculty and staff greeted groups and shared unique details of the spaces. The eight stops along the tour included a 300-person classroom where international speakers, distinguished lecture series and events that honor students, staff and faculty will be hosted; clinical spaces; Creative Arts Therapies teaching spaces; and a virtual reality classroom, a state-of-the-art room where CNHP students will learn and practice skills in a safe, immersive and realistic environments.
Distinctive lab spaces—SIM, Clinical Skills, Digital Anatomy and Imaging and Gross Anatomy labs—rounded out the tour. All are outfitted with state-of-the-art equipment and technology to enhance students’ hands-on educational experience. “The Health Sciences Building will support us in ushering in transformational opportunities for education and community engagement. This is the structure – but it is all about you and what you do – this beautiful new building is designed to enhance your purpose and everyday excellence,” concluded Gitlin.
Written by Roberta S. Perry