Planned expansion will allow for health-related collaboration


A planned $26 million addition to the Herbert H. and Grace. A. Dow College of Health Professions Building will make way for more collaboration between health-related majors.

The addition is being called the Center for Integrated Health Studies. Thomas J. Masterson, dean of the College of Health Professions, said the new center will allow different health-related majors to work together when it comes to treating cases.

The plan is to build a human physiology lab and include an inter-professional education center to allow students from various health-related programs to treat patients in simulated emergency situations, such as heart attacks or strokes. Research space is also planned for the new center.

The project is currently planned as an addition to the current CHP building, but could be expanded to a stand-alone building as the project moves forward.

“The goal of the addition is to increase the number of high-demand healthcare-related graduates,” Masterson said.

Funding for the project will come from the university and a capital outlay request, which is used by the State of Michigan to provide funding for classroom spaces. The university will spend $6 million on the addition, and capital outlay funding will cover the difference.

The $10.6 million deficit in the university budget will have no effect on the plans for the Center for Integrated Health Studies, Masterson said. The college also hopes to bring in health science students from other colleges, like Mid-Michigan Community College and Ferris State University.

The new facility will give students a taste of working in the real world with other health professions, he said.

Macomb junior Kaitlin Mueller said she is looking forward to working with other majors.

“We’re gonna have to work together eventually, so it’s good that we are doing that now,” the kinesiology major said.

The building will alleviate overflow of students, including those there for general education classes.

“The (health professions) building is full,” Masterson said. “(And it) is the busiest building on campus.”

He said they have about 300 undergraduate students and about 140 graduate students per year.

The college is working closely with Facilities Management to build the expansion. Jonathan Webb, vice president of Facilities Management, said the university will work to make the facility envisioned by the college.

“You’re going to have the aperture open wide and see what works,” Webb said.

The expansion is still in the planning stage, and Masterson said it could take up to three years before construction begins.

Facilities Management is looking to draw inspiration for the layout of the new addition.
“We will look at other college and see what similar buildings will look like,” Webb said.