The University of Kentucky has held a ceremonial groundbreaking on the Lexington campus for the largest academic building in its history.
At over 500,000 square feet, the new Health Education Building will house programs in the colleges of Medicine, Public Health, Health Sciences and Nursing as well as the Center for Interprofessional and Community Health Education, the university says. The facility is scheduled to open in 2026.”
The Health Education Building will feature technological advancements, modern aesthetics and a spacious environment conducive to learning.
The $380 million project was authorized by the 2022 Kentucky General Assembly, and the construction phase was approved in June 2023 by the university's Board of Trustees.
The building will rise across University Drive from University Flats with eight floors on the south wing and 10 floors on the north wing. Plans call for 77% of the space to be dedicated to academic, shared and collaborative spaces for students and faculty, including 25% devoted to classrooms and learning labs and 34% for simulation and experiential learning.
The building’s north wing exterior will feature brick and glass, and as the building transitions, the south wing’s expansive glass front will provide ample natural light to faculty workspace offices. Along University Drive, a signature “basketweave” façade will align with the curved roadway. A glowing glass “lantern” structure anchors the northeast corner.
However, more important than the size and space amenities in the building are the opportunities it will provide for the next generation of health care professionals.
Addressing the growing shortage of health care providers is paramount to the mission of the University of Kentucky, and this facility will give the university an important means in solving this issue.
The new Health Education Building will enable:
- The College of Medicine to grow its medical education program in Lexington from about 138 students per year to 200 students per year.
- It will also enable the College of Nursing to double enrollment by more than 350 students total per year in its traditional Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) and Advanced BSN (ABSN) programs.
- In the College of Health Sciences, enrollment will be increased by 30% with more than 460 students across five professional programs.
- The College of Public Health enrollment will increase by more than 30% by adding 350 students in its undergraduate and graduate programs.
- The Center for Interprofessional and Community Health Education, which helps develop an effective, diverse and collaborative health workforce for Kentucky and beyond, will be able to affect 50% more students annually who will be prepared to provide quality team-based care as professionals.
Additionally, the conceptual design of the building will promote collaboration among the colleges and emphasize flexible, student-centric spaces.
MORE. From YouTube: University of Kentucky's Health Education Building.