Summer is going by quickly at Methodist University. The last summer term started Monday, July 9, leaving just six weeks until the start of the fall term. Faculty, staff and coaches are preparing for the coming semester, while workers are also preparing the ﬁ nishing touches on two new buildings that will open in the fall.
Hundreds of freshman will arrive for orientation Aug. 17, but many student athletes will move onto campus before then. The Methodist University football program will bring roughly 130 new students and 100 returning students on campus Aug. 8 to begin training for the upcoming football season. They will be joined by athletic training students, who help the school’s professionally certiﬁ ed athletic trainers support the MU teams. Students in the marching band also come on campus at the same time, to start practicing for their season.
The Methodist community knows that the start of the new school year is right around the corner when they hear the marching band practicing on Coach Sink Field or see the players running drills on the football ﬁeld.
Before any students move in, the housekeeping and maintenance staffs work tirelessly to get the residence halls back in shape for the opening of the school year. Between the times that summer camps end and the fall semester starts, activity in the residence halls is a whirlwind of cleaning and polishing, making sure students’ new home away from home is ready.
Adding to the activity this summer is the soon-to-be-completed Nursing Building and the three-story sophomore residence hall. Both buildings are slated to be open for the fall semester.
One hundred lucky students will be the ﬁrst residents of the new sophomore hall in the coming months. The new 27,000-square-foot residence hall is located on the perimeter of Sink Field, ﬂanked by the Greek houses on opposite sides of the intramural ﬁ eld. The building will top off the development around the ﬁ eld and be a centerpiece for a new community on the MU campus.
The new hall is very different from any other residence halls on campus, and embraces a modern living/learning model that is creating a buzz in higher education. As well as lobbies on each ﬂ oor and a snack-bar store to service residents living around or visiting Sink Field, the new building will have a functional classroom space.
The hall will have 50 two-person rooms, each with its own private bathroom. Those 100 beds will also mean the end of subsidized off-campus apartments for the many students who wanted to live on campus but just could not ﬁnd a space.
Across campus, work is nearly done on the new Nursing Building. Next semester will be the ﬁrst full semester of nursing classes for the Professional Nursing Studies Program. For the past two years, pre-nursing students have been taking all their core and pre-required classes.
The jewel of the new $3.2 million facility is the MU General Simulation Hospital. About half of the 10,000-square-foot facility will be designed for the hospital — designed to replicate scenarios from the ﬁ rst moment a patient arrives to be admitted until they are discharged. The simulation hospital also includes a pharmacy, nurse’s stations, pediatric ward, critical care rooms, triage suite, and six simulated patients who range from an infant to adult, including an expectant mother.
The patients — life-sized computerized mannequins — can breathe, speak, have audible vital sounds and progress through various medical scenarios from birth to death. The patients are not the only high-tech part of the hospital, either. Throughout the hospital, 41 ceiling-mounted cameras will record the action so students can go back and observe, and ultimately improve their performance. The cameras are part of the learning space by Medical Education Technologies, Inc., which acts as the brain of the simulation.
In addition to the hospital, the new facility will have a 60-seat auditorium, classroom space, a computer lab, faculty and administrative ofﬁ ces, and a student lounge.
To learn more about Methodist University and its programs, please visit www.methodist.edu or search for “Methodist University” on Facebook.
Photo: The new nursing building at Methodist University.