Health Science Building dedicated
“This is a continuation of the university’s commitment to healthcare,” pronounced CSU President Dr. Jairy C. Hunter, Jr. at CSU’s new Health Science Building dedication on Friday morning.
The $11 million facility meets the needs of Charleston Southern’s expanding undergraduate and graduate degree programs in healthcare and is designed to meet the growing need for healthcare professionals in the Lowcountry. In addition to providing the new home for the inaugural Physician Assistant class, the technology-rich facility also supports the new Master of Science in Biology program and will serve the future Physical Therapy program.
Hunter added, “It’s important to have such a first class building, and to integrate faith in such an area is an honor.”
Founding Program Director Gabby Poole said, “Our mission is to produce compassionate, motivated individuals in a Christian environment.” Poole also believes the new program has the potential to become the premier PA program in the state. Students from all over the country sought to gain acceptance. More than 300 applicants competed for the 25 spots in January’s inaugural class. Class President Kristy Gonzalez, from Orlando, Fla., told those assembled, “I truly believe God placed me here, and CSU is the perfect intersection for God’s purpose and my passion.”
Other students excitedly spoke of the resources, the support system and the outstanding technology. Theresa Adams, from Jacksonville, Fla., was thrilled to be a part of the first PA cohort. “We get to set the foundation and blaze the trail for those who follow.” Some students felt the CSU interview process was a huge differentiator. Students were asked to go through a circuit-based process where they answered questions from different professionals along the way. “It was the only interview process I actually enjoyed,” said Gabriela Garza of Kansas. “It was just so much more personal.” A classmate echoed those thoughts. Halie Curry, from N. Augusta, S.C., said, “CSU’s approach gave me a whole different feel. Getting accepted is so competitive. I was wait-listed at other places, but when I got my phone call saying I was coming here, I was so happy, I cried.”
Following the ribbon cutting, the building was available to tour. Supporters of the project along with friends of CSU, saw firsthand the clinical exam room for simulating the patient care experience as well as the lab where students will learn to perform physical exams.
Fred Yohe, a CSU Board of Trustees member, summed it up by saying, “It’s an exciting day, and we’re so grateful for everyone’s effort in making this happen.”
The Health Science Building is located on the front of campus next to the College of Nursing. A second phase for the building is planned for the future Doctor of Physical Therapy program, slated to begin in January 2020.