New Health Sciences Education Center
IMEG provided engineering design and services for the new Health Sciences Education Center (HSEC) at the University of Minnesota, which houses the six colleges and schools of the Academic Health Center. HSEC is one of the most comprehensive interprofessional education facilities in the country, providing the University’s Academic Health Center a much-needed front door and enhancing connections to the nearby clinic and surgery center. The new building is connected to the Phillips-Wangensteen Building (PWB), where existing space was also renovated as part of the project.
Engineers provided MEP design for the 202,000-sf, seven-story, state-of-the-art interdisciplinary facility which supports team-based learning across five health science disciplines. The HSEC features active learning classrooms; a simulation center for outpatient, inpatient, and general clinic training; study spaces; and a biomedical library for all health sciences schools at the university. Working closely with HSEC staff and faculty, the design team formed spatial and programmatic connections across the Academic Health Center, creating opportunities for cross-pollination between disciplines, providing informal learning spaces, and promoting connections between schools.
Special spaces of the HSEC include:
- Data and Visualization Lab – In this space, users learn about data science methods and the language and grammar of visualization and receive help applying these methods to work and communicate more effectively.
- Makerspace – Students can use this space to develop and exchange ideas across many disciplines inside and outside the health sciences programs with access to prototyping equipment, supplies, and expertise to develop personal projects, coursework, or innovation.
- Virtual and Augmented Reality Lab – The lab serves as a hub for university-wide use and exploration of virtual worlds for education, research, and patient care. A range of current-generation hardware and healthcare-specific software is provided along with VR/AR/gaming devices to enhance learning and patient care.
- 1:Button Studios – Individuals can simply walk in, plug in a laptop, and create a high-definition video for presentations, podcasts, or conferencing needs.
- Real-World Training Spaces – The HSEC houses 18 outpatient exam rooms, an acute care suite, two operating rooms, seven inpatient simulation rooms, nurse station, and med prep room.