UCA breaks ground on 80,000ft² Integrated Health Sciences Building
October 17, 2019 – The University of Central Arkansas (UCA) has broken ground on an 80,000ft² Integrated Health Sciences Building in the US.
To be located at Western Avenue and Bruce Street on the university campus, the four-storey facility is scheduled to open in 2021 and will house the School of Nursing and the Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders.
It will also include Nabholz Center for Healthcare Simulation and Interprofessional Teaching Center to be utilised by the College of Health and Behavioral Sciences.
UCA said that the facility has been designed to create an interprofessional educational environment and allow students to participate in clinical and simulation experiences for a variety of majors in the college.
UCA president Houston Davis said: “This new facility will have an immediate impact on the nursing shortage in Arkansas by immediately providing room for 50 more nursing students.
“Since more than 90% of our health care graduates stay in the state to practice, this is very good news for Arkansans.
“As one of the state’s leading providers of health care professionals, this cutting-edge facility will further enhance UCA’s role as a thought leader and innovator in meeting the professional health care needs of the state and region.”
According to the UCA, the Interprofessional Teaching Center will be built on the first floor and the Nabholz Center for Healthcare Simulation on the third floor, which will provide students with carefully programmed, life-like training scenarios.
The other two floors will accommodate classrooms and office space for faculty and staff.
College of Health and Behavioral Sciences dean Jimmy Ishee said: “We’re creating an environment for our students that replicate the collaborative environment they will enter as graduates.
“These transformative experiences prepare our students for internships, employment and ultimately, for careers providing exceptional health care.”
Taggart Architects is responsible for planning and architecture for the facility and Nabholz Construction is the general contractor for the project.
The $37.7m primary funding for the project has been provided through a bond appropriation by the UCA Board of Trustees.
A fundraising campaign for an additional $5m for facility and equipment is in progress.