Grand Valley breaks ground on DeVos Center for Interprofessional Health

More than 300 people attended a groundbreaking ceremony October 23 for the Daniel and Pamella DeVos Center for Interprofessional Health on Grand Valley State University's expanding Health Campus in downtown Grand Rapids.
More than 300 people attended a groundbreaking ceremony October 23 for the Daniel and Pamella DeVos Center for Interprofessional Health on Grand Valley State University's expanding Health Campus in downtown Grand Rapids.
Image Credit: Amanda Pitts
More than 300 people attended a groundbreaking ceremony October 23 for the Daniel and Pamella DeVos Center for Interprofessional Health on Grand Valley State University's expanding Health Campus in downtown Grand Rapids.
Dan and Pamella DeVos
Image Credit: Amanda Pitts
President Thomas J. Haas
President Thomas J. Haas
Image Credit: Amanda Pitts
Lt. Gov. Brian Calley
Lt. Gov. Brian Calley
Image Credit: Amanda Pitts
State Sen. Arlan Meekhof
State Sen. Arlan Meekhof
Image Credit: Amanda Pitts
State Rep. David LaGrand
State Rep. David LaGrand
Image Credit: Amanda Pitts
GVSU Provost Maria Cimitile
GVSU Provost Maria Cimitile
Image Credit: Amanda Pitts
Nursing student Douglas Chambers
Nursing student Douglas Chambers
Image Credit: Amanda Pitts
Rendering
Image Credit: Courtesy photo

More than 300 people attended a groundbreaking ceremony October 23 for the Daniel and Pamella DeVos Center for Interprofessional Health on Grand Valley State University's expanding Health Campus in downtown Grand Rapids.

The new center, under construction at 333 Michigan St. on the Medical Mile, will be the third and flagship building on the Health Campus, joining the Cook-DeVos Center for Health Sciences and Raleigh J. Finkelstein Hall.

President Thomas J. Haas thanked donors and elected officials for their "continuing transformative support" of Grand Valley and its students. Haas said the naming of the building for Dan and Pamella DeVos reflects the genuine care and concern they have for the community and its future.

"We will generate a great return on your investment by continuing to provide top talent for our region and our state," Haas said. "I'm often told by employers across the state that our health sciences graduates are exceptional caregivers."

The DeVos Center for Interprofessional Health will include 15 classrooms and 14 interactive laboratories, and help accommodate expanding programs in growing fields at both the undergraduate and graduate level. 

Lt. Gov. Brian Calley, who earned an MBA from Grand Valley in 2000, said the university is a significant talent pipeline for the state.

"Talent is the new currency of economic development and Grand Valley is playing an important and pivotal role in developing that pipeline," Calley said. "Education is everything — education is freedom and connection to all the things that are important in life, and right in the middle of it is Grand Valley State University." 

The new five-story, 160,000-square-foot center will allow Grand Valley to significantly expand and update its simulation center and space available for collaborative work.  

Dan DeVos said the groundbreaking ceremony was also a celebration of his late parents, Rich and Helen DeVos, who had an early vision for the Medical Mile and matched the generosity of their son and daughter-in-law as leadership donors for the building.

"I’ve heard my dad and others say, 'What would West Michigan be like without Grand Valley?' It is hard to imagine," DeVos said. "Grand Valley faculty, staff members and students will give the building life, and students will use it to change lives."

Maria Cimitile, GVSU provost, said the new health building will advance health education with the newest technology. "It will double our simulation space, giving us more room for interprofessional collaboration," Cimitile said.

The Kirkhof College of Nursing will be housed in the center, bringing faculty and students together in collaborative spaces to accommodate interactive learning. 

Nursing student Doug Chambers said Grand Valley's professionalism and caring faculty drew him from the east side of the state. "I learned how important it is to choose a school in close proximity to clinical opportunities and I've taken advantage of my rotations in psychiatry, oncology and other areas right here in Grand Rapids," Chambers said.

Grand Valley is the region's leading provider of health care professionals with more than 20 health sciences programs.

The State of Michigan is providing $29 million for the $70 million project; the remaining funds will come from private donors and university bonds. Construction is expected to be completed in May 2021.

For more information, visit www.gvsu.edu/giving/interprofessionalhealth.

Click here for a video about the Daniel and Pamella DeVos Center for Interprofessional Health.