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New Home for Health Science Programs Celebrated with Groundbreaking Ceremony

POSTED:  July 3, 2012 – West Liberty University (WLU) celebrated the groundbreaking for its state-of-the art Campbell Hall of Health Sciences on Monday, July 2, 2012. The $23 million building is expected to be completed by November 2013. It will house six programs of study: chemistry, dental hygiene, medical laboratory sciences, nursing, speech pathology/audiology and the newest WLU health science program, physician assistant studies.

President Capehart, Dr. Clyde Campbell, WLU friend Dick Dlesk.

From left, President Robin C. Capehart, President Emeritus Dr. Clyde D. Campbell and Wheeling businessman Dick Dlesk, celebrate the groundbreaking of the Campbell Hall of Health Sciences.

The new hall is named in honor of Dr. Clyde Campbell, who graduated from WLU in 1953 and later served as president of the institution from 1984 – 1995. Campbell also taught at the University for many years as a professor of chemistry and was a patented research scientist in the field of biological chemistry and plastics.

President Robin C. Capehart, now concluding his fifth year of leadership at WLU, began his remarks by thanking the former West Virginia Chancellor of Higher Education Brian Noland and current Chancellor Dr. Paul Hill, for their support of the building project from its inception. He also thanked Senator Joe Manchin, who was West Virginia governor at the time, and current Governor Earl Ray Tomblin, for their support.

“On July 2, 2007, we began a journey – a journey focused on transforming the institution from a good college to a great university,” Capehart said. “We began this journey knowing that we were only stewards of this institution and the heirs of a great tradition. We promised to take advantage of any opportunities that came before us; to pursue success, not just survival; and to strive for excellence, not just existence.

Capehart continued by stating, “great universities prepare students to contribute to an evolving and contemporary society. Today classes began in our graduate program for physician assistants. Forbes Magazine recently ranked the Master’s Degree in Physician Assistant Studies as the best opportunity in the country in terms of getting a job following graduation.”

The inaugural class of physician assistants began their first day of studies just after the groundbreaking ceremony.

The four-story administrative and classroom structure has been designed using neoclassical architectural elements, consistent with the overall look of the university. Architect for the project is Perfido, Weiskopf, Wagstaff and Goettel of Pittsburgh. Nello Construction of Canonsburg, Pa., is the builder.

WLU is seeking additional funding for the construction of the building. The state of West Virginia has committed $12.75 million of the total budget, the University has invested additional funds and several private donors have stepped forward. Currently, the Office of Institutional Advancement is seeking support from alumni, friends of the institution, corporations and foundations to meet the remaining $6 million fundraising goal.

“Today, we take a significant step forward in our journey to become a great university – as we break ground on Campbell Hall – and commemorate the beginning of the construction of a state-of-the-art health science building, that will be without peer and second to none in terms of providing our students and our faculty with a rich and robust learning environment.”

Capehart concluded the groundbreaking by thanking the staff and inviting them to enjoy the day.

“So let us enjoy this day and be thankful for our good fortune – but be mindful that this is merely a stop along the way – for tomorrow, we’ll join together again to resume our journey – a journey that will take us from a good college to a great university.”

Located on Faculty Drive, below Shaw Hall, Campbell Hall will enhance a currently wooded area of campus and add to the overall student experience. For more information on the Campbell Hall of Health Science, please call 304-336-8888 or visit westliberty.edu.