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Posted: Septemter 24th, 2012
The Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine has received lead gift commitments of $20 million from the Mt. Sinai Health Care Foundation and Cleveland Foundation to fund a new medical education and research building that will serve as the School of Medicine's headquarters. Each foundation has generously agreed to contribute $10 million toward the project.
The School of Medicine is planning to build a 160,000 square-foot education and research facility designed to incorporate the most modern technology, teaching and laboratory techniques. The building and its amenities will strengthen the school's influence nationally while extending and deepening the school's impact within the community. It will serve as the home office of the Weatherhead Institute for Family Medicine and Community Health and a physical base for the institute's community-engaged research and programs.
The new building will enhance the school's ability to realize the greatest potential of its most recent curriculum innovation. Academic spaces will mirror core curriculum elements, such as technologically enhanced small-group learning rooms, modern anatomy labs, wired lecture halls and independent study spaces. It will return existing educational spaces within current buildings to their original purposes as homes for research laboratories where faculty make groundbreaking discoveries. And, it will provide faculty a welcoming space to engage with the community as part of efforts to study and enhance the well-being of our city's residents.
A key element will be the Mt. Sinai Skills and Simulation Center, which will be prominently located in the new facility. This advanced resource center currently is several blocks away from the school's primary medical education spaces. The building also will provide rooms that facilitate small group learning and interaction, and it will allow the medical school to increase class sizes to a level that meets the request of the Association of American Medical Colleges to help meet projected physician demands nationwide. It also addresses the request of the Liaison Committee on Medical Education (LCME) accrediting body.
In 2008, the LCME's accreditation team called our new Western Reserve2 Curriculum (implemented in 2006) the "class of the field." Unfortunately, the same report cited the school's facilities as a major shortcoming. Existing buildings do not provide the technical and technological resources required to execute a 21st-century curriculum.
Thanks to the lead support of the Mt. Sinai Health Care Foundation and the Cleveland Foundation, the School of Medicine is well on the path to this much needed physical expansion and technology update. These gifts represent a tremendous vote of confidence by the foundation boards in our faculty, staff and students, all of whom deserve congratulations for their hard work at this pivotal moment.
The Mt. Sinai Health Care Foundation was formed as a result of the 1996 sale of Cleveland's Mt. Sinai Medical Center and related hospitals. The Foundation's purpose is to assist Greater Cleveland's organizations and leaders to improve the health and well-being of the Jewish and general communities now and for generations to come. Since grant making began in 1997, the Foundation has distributed more that $78 million to improve health status in Greater Cleveland.
The Cleveland Foundation, established in 1914, is the world's first community foundation and one of the largest today, with assets of $1.8 billion and 2011 grants of nearly $80 million. Through the generosity of donors, the foundation improves the lives of Greater Clevelanders now and for generations to come by building community endowment, addressing needs through grant making, and providing leadership on vital issues.