June 13, 2018

Construction begins for Weldon School of Biomedical Engineering building expansion

Wodicka wing The Innovation Wing will promote increased interdisciplinary synergies across Purdue and strong working partnerships with medical device companies. (Image provided) Download image

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. — Construction has begun on a $14 million addition to the Martin C. Jischke Hall of Biomedical Engineering at Purdue University. The Innovation Wing will provide a platform for the strategic expansion of the Weldon School of Biomedical Engineering’s educational programs, research capabilities, and industry outreach.

“With a translational Innovation Wing to our building under construction, our goal is to grow our educational and research programs by roughly 50 percent over the next several years,” said George R. Wodicka, the Dane A. Miller Head and Professor of the Weldon School of Biomedical Engineering. “This growth is necessary to keep pace with the need for the innovation and translation of medical technologies and industry demand for biomedical engineers.”

Plans are for the school to increase the number of core faculty members to over 40, postdoctoral fellows to 50, graduate students to more than 200 — including 25 MD/PhD candidates — and undergraduate students to over 400.

The Weldon School has experienced exponential growth during the past decade. Its current facility, the Martin C. Jischke Hall of Biomedical Engineering, was dedicated in 2006. Since then, the faculty and student body have more than doubled, fueling research from discovery to applied with federal research funding doubling over the past five years. In addition, the Weldon School has added two new federally-funded T-32 graduate training programs, the Bioengineering Interdisciplinary Training in Diabetes Research Program and the Hearing Science Training Program, and substantially grown its MD-PhD Medical Scientist Training Program with the Indiana University School of Medicine.

“The building expansion will provide a state-of-the-art platform for novel research, technology innovation, hands-on and online instruction, and outreach to current and new company and health-care partners,” Wodicka said. “It will ensure that we continue to attract the brightest students and faculty and that they have the collaborative, state-of-the-art spaces they need to succeed in this burgeoning field.”

Following the vision and design principles of the Martin C. Jischke Hall of Biomedical Engineering, the 29,500-square-foot wing will provide open-concept wet research labs; translational research labs, including a behavioral core; an expanded multidisciplinary student design lab; and support spaces for both instructional and research laboratories. Additional areas of the wing will house instructional spaces that support innovative active-learning pedagogy, office spaces, graduate student office areas and interactive team areas.

Construction is expected to be completed in July 2019. The school is planning a grand opening ceremony on Sept. 6, 2019.

BSA LifeStructures Inc., is the project’s architect, and the construction manager is Walsh Construction Co.

To support the Innovation Wing or the learn more about naming opportunities, contact Brian Knoy at (765) 494-6241 or bjknoy@prf.org.

Media contact: Brian Huchel, 765-494-2084, bhuchel@purdue.edu 

Source: George Wodicka, wodicka@purdue.edu

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