Department of Speech, Language and Hearing Sciences and medical and health programs that provide students a variety of learning and clinical experiences."> New Purdue building to strengthen learning, research in health fields

New Purdue building to strengthen learning, research in health fields

April 18, 2012

Lyles-Porter Hall is named in honor of a $10 million 2009 gift from Marybeth Lyles-Porter Higuera of Visalia, Calif. This new building, which will house the Department of Speech, Language and Hearing Sciences; the Indiana University School of Medicine - Lafayette on the campus of Purdue; and other health programs, will be located at the northwest corner of Harrison and University streets in an area of campus known as the Life and Health Sciences Park. Lyles-Porter Hall also will have an 850-space attached parking facility.

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WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. - Purdue University on Wednesday (April 18) celebrated its plans for Lyles-Porter Hall, which will house the university's nationally ranked Department of Speech, Language and Hearing Sciences and medical and health programs that provide students a variety of learning and clinical experiences.

"The people who will be studying and working in this building are all motivated by compassion to help people," said Purdue President France A. Córdova. "No matter if a student is studying for a career in nursing, athletic training or medicine, or a professor is trying to improve hearing devices or understand complex speech problems, their goal is to improve people's quality of life. This facility will be key to training students and expanding research opportunities, as well as improving wellness programs and clinics offered to the community."

Lyles-Porter Hall, planned for approximately 61,000 assignable square feet, is named in honor of a $10 million 2009 gift from Marybeth Lyles-Porter Higuera (Pronounced EE-guera) of Visalia, Calif. Higuera is a former speech pathologist who earned her bachelor's degree in speech-language pathology in 1959.

"My gift represents a tribute to my family, as well as an investment in Purdue, the place that first taught me to shine," Higuera said. "I enjoyed a successful 20-year career as a speech pathologist thanks to my Purdue education, and I am excited that I can help others who are passionate about speech, communication and health in general."

This new building, which also will house the Indiana University School of Medicine - Lafayette on the campus of Purdue, will be located at the northwest corner of Harrison and University streets in an area of campus known as the Life and Health Sciences Park. Lyles-Porter Hall also will have an 850-space attached parking facility. Purdue also celebrated plans on Wednesday (April 18) for the Drug Discovery Building to be constructed in the same area. Other facilities in this health and life sciences hub, which is located within State, University and Harrison streets and Jischke Drive, include Hansen Life Sciences Research, Agricultural and Biological Engineering, and Hockmeyer Hall of Structural Biology.

The total cost for the building and attached parking structure is $54 million. In addition to $38 million in bond proceeds, gifts totaling $16 million will be used to build the facility. Construction is expected to begin this summer, and the building will open in 2014.

"The College of Health and Human Sciences was recently formed, but Purdue's Department of Speech, Language and Hearing Sciences has a long and rich history," said Christine Ladisch, dean of the College of Health and Human Sciences.

This spring, U.S.News & World Report ranked the accredited master's degree in speech-language pathology fifth and the accredited doctor of audiology program 12th.

"Today, the department is known for its research in areas such as child language development, brain mechanisms in stuttering and other language processing, speech challenges for Parkinson's disease patients, basic mechanisms of hearing, and assistive hearing devices," she said. "It also is considered one of the top programs for student training, especially at the graduate level."

One example is the doctor of audiology program, which is a collaboration between Purdue and the Indiana University School of Medicine's Department of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery in Indianapolis. Thanks to this partnership, Purdue audiology students work in clinical settings through the medical school, such as pediatric audiology and a cochlear implant program.

Purdue and the Indiana University School of Medicine also have another partnership on campus through the IU School of Medicine at Lafayette program, which also will be housed in Lyles-Porter Hall. Each year 32 first- and second-year IU medical students are placed at the IUSM-Lafayette regional site on the Purdue campus, and after the new facility opens, that number will be increased to 48 and will expand to include third- and fourth-year students who will do clinical rotations in the Greater Lafayette area.

"It is estimated that in 15 years, the state of Indiana will have 1,300 fewer doctors than it needs, reflective of the incoming physician shortage nationally," said Dr. D. Craig Brater, dean and Walter J. Daly Professor at the IU School of Medicine. "Moreover, not only are we at risk of a shortage of raw numbers of physicians, the current shortage of primary care physicians will be exacerbated substantially. As a result, there is a great demand for medical schools to educate and train more doctors, and this new facility makes that possible. There also will be opportunities for the medical students at Purdue to interact with local physicians, enhancing the likelihood they will enter primary care as they will return to this area to meet the health-care needs of the future."

The other programs and centers planned for Lyles-Porter Hall are:

* A.H. Ismail Center for Health, Exercise and Nutrition: This community resource will be an addition to the original site at Lambert Fieldhouse. The Ismail Center, which is a fitness center operated by the Department of Health and Kinesiology, features equipment and trainers in cardiovascular and strength training. Students gain clinical experience in health and fitness testing, exercise prescription, exercise leadership, counseling, and management.

* Nursing Center for Family Health: Will be relocated from Johnson Hall, and gives nursing students clinical experience when working with faculty to provide free health promotion screenings for Purdue employees, their spouses, graduate students and university retirees.

* Nutritional Training and Research Center: The training aspect of this program is to provide clinical experience for nutrition science students, and space will be available for research studies coordinated by faculty in the Department of Nutrition Science.

* Purdue Psychology Treatment and Research Clinics: Delivers psychological services to adults, children and families in the community. Therapists are qualified psychologists-in-training who are supervised by licensed faculty members from the Department of Psychological Sciences.

* M.D. Steer Audiology and Speech-Language Clinics: The audiology clinic provides diagnostic and rehabilitative services for all ages and averages 1,700 patient visits a year. The clinic serves multiple counties statewide and is a hearing health-care provider for newborns and infants who have been identified with hearing loss. Other services include providing hearing aids, assistive listening devices, and group and individual therapy. The speech clinic averages 2,500 client visits annually and offers many programs, including an adult language program for clients with language problems following stroke or other brain injuries, a birth-to-3 program, a Brain Builders program for clients with dementia, the Purdue Preschool Language Program, treatment for stuttering in preschoolers through adulthood, and voice therapy in conjunction with area physicians.

"Parking and location convenience will be a great benefit with this new facility to help the patients of all ages that we see," said Keith R. Kluender, professor and head of the Department of Speech, Language and Hearing Sciences. "The clinics offer care and services to meet community needs, as well as supervised clinical training for our students. Through our clinics and services throughout the state, we help more than 4,700 people every year, many of whom would not receive specialized care without us."

There are currently 22 research and tenure-track faculty and 15 clinical faculty members in the Department of Speech, Language and Hearing Sciences. Purdue's speech pathology program began in 1935 to assist students who had speech problems. In 1948 the first doctoral degree was awarded. Purdue's programs were among the first in the country to achieve accreditation in speech pathology and audiology from the Educational Standards Board, now known as the Council for Academic Accreditation, of the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA).

Higuera, who also completed a master's degree in audiology from California State University of Long Beach, worked in public schools in California, including Kingsburg, where she designed and implemented the first full-time speech therapy program. The building is named for the grandfathers of her four children.

The paternal grandfather is George A. Porter, who graduated with a bachelor's degree in civil engineering in 1922, and the maternal grandfather is her father, William M. Lyles Jr., who earned a bachelor's degree in civil engineering in 1935. Higuera's mother, Elizabeth Lyles, also earned a bachelor's degree in science in 1933 and a master's degree in science education in 1934. Higuera's grandfather, the late H. Gerald Venemann, graduated from Purdue in 1907 and retired from Purdue in 1954 as professor emeritus of mechanical engineering. Her brothers, Gerald V. Lyles and William M. Lyles, also are Purdue alumni. One of her four children, Thomas W. Porter, attended Purdue and earned a bachelor's degree in industrial engineering in 1985.

Writer:  Amy Patterson Neubert, 765-494-9723, apatterson@purdue.edu

Sources:  France A. Córdova, president@purdue.edu
                  Christine Ladisch, ladischc@purdue.edu
                  Keith Kluender, kkluender@purdue.edu