Medical-Education Momentum

August 1, 2008

The Duke Endowment has pledged $50 million to Duke Medical Center to help construct a medical-education building and to develop a state-of-the-art inpatient facility for pediatric patients. The gift is the largest single gift the medical center has ever received.

Plans call for $35 million to go toward the construction of a new Duke School of Medicine Education Center, which will enhance opportunities for medical students to learn and interact with one another, instructors, and clinical and basic-research faculty members in one location.

"It is becoming increasingly important to have a facility that can house initiatives such as simulation labs and provide space for the team-based learning programs that are rapidly replacing traditional lecture-based learning," says Nancy Andrews, dean of the medical school.

Officials say the site for the education center has not been finalized, but plans for the building include classrooms, lecture halls, and gathering areas with moveable walls and seating so groups of up to 500 people can be accommodated in one place. Plans also include office space for admissions and educational staff, study and lounge areas, a café and bookstore, and possibly a fitness center.

The other $15 million will be used to create a new facility for the McGovern-Davison Children's Health Center. It will link all inpatient and outpatient services, consolidating all pediatric and adolescent beds in a family-friendly environment.