9/26/12 ASHLAND, Ohio – Ashland University will hold a dedication and ribbon cutting ceremony for its new Dwight Schar College of Nursing building on Friday, Oct. 12, at 4 p.m. at 1020 S. Trimble Road, the corner of Trimble Road and Marion Avenue in Mansfield.
The event, which is free and open to the public, will consist of an opening program dedicating the 46,000-square-foot facility followed by the ribbon cutting and public tours of the new building. The building opened for fall nursing classes on Aug. 20.
“This will be a very, very special day. This new building has been a dream of a lot of people in the Richland County area for a long time,” said Ashland University President Dr. Fred Finks, who extended an invitation to area residents and those associated with health care to attend the event.
“Our faculty, staff and students are so excited to show off this beautiful, state-of-the-art facility,” Finks said. “We’d like to invite everyone to come out and see what we believe is a magnificent addition to both Ashland University and the community of Mansfield.”
The new facility includes a number of clinical laboratories housed within the Simulation Center, including a Health Foundations lab, Family Health lab, Adult Health lab, Complex Health lab, ICU/CCU/NICU, Advanced Care lab, Community Health Home Care lab, and four patient examination labs.
Other spaces in the building will include traditional classrooms, faculty/staff offices, student study and lounge areas, and student support spaces.
“We are excited because this facility does much to enhance the academic programs of the University,” said AU Provost Dr. Frank Pettigrew. “The new home of the Dwight Schar College of Nursing and Health Sciences provides the physical architecture needed to deliver an innovative, world-class education for the healthcare leaders of tomorrow.”
Faye Grund, interim dean of the Dwight Schar College of Nursing and Health Sciences, agreed, noting “This facility enhances our ability to meet the needs of our students in ways we have not been able to before and allows us to educate and prepare nurses who are ready to meet the health care needs of a complex society.”
Ashland University nursing students complete their first two years of the program on the AU campus in Ashland and then move to the Mansfield campus for the last two years of education and clinical studies.
In August of 2010, Ashland University acquired MedCentral College of Nursing as part of its strategic plan to expand its health care program to meet the demand for qualified nurses in Ohio and the United States.
“It is hard to believe that it was January of 2010 when this idea to acquire MedCentral began to take shape, and 2 ½ years later we are holding classes in this new state-of-the-art building,” Finks said. Groundbreaking for the new building was held on June 16, 2011.
The University launched a fundraising campaign – “Compassion. Community. Commitment. Building a Healthy Tomorrow” – to fund construction of the new facility. The campaign received a $5 million lead gift from Ashland University alumnus and longtime supporter Dwight Schar.
While fundraising for the new building surpassed the initial campaign goal of $12 million, revised plans and increased construction costs have pushed the total cost of the building to nearly $15.5 million. “The University continues to raise money for construction of the new facility and we are hopeful that we can reach the new goal by the end of the year,” Finks said.
The new building replaces the old MedCentral facility on Glessner Avenue, which was being leased by the University as part of the agreement with MedCentral.
Ashland University, ranked in the top 200 colleges and universities in U.S. News and World Report’s National Universities category for 2013, is a mid-sized, private university conveniently located a short distance from Akron, Cleveland and Columbus, Ohio. Ashland University (www.ashland.edu) values the individual student and offers a unique educational experience that combines the challenge of strong, applied academic programs with a faculty and staff who build nurturing relationships with their students.