Ribbon-Cutting Ceremony Celebrates Millikin University's New Health Sciences Center

The $3.2 million facility provides a centralized location for the School of Nursing.

DECATUR, Ill. – A ceremonial ribbon cutting was held at Millikin University’s new Health Sciences Center on Wednesday, May 8, to signify the completion of the $3.2 million project that provides a central location for the School of Nursing. 

Ribbon cutting
A ribbon-cutting ceremony celebrated the completion of Millikin's Health Sciences Center project.

The ribbon was cut by Millikin alum Susan Campbell ’68, former member of the U.S. House of Representative Rodney Davis ’92, Millikin President Jim Reynolds, Chair of the Board of Trustees Ron Branch, Provost Mary Black, Vice President of Alumni & Development Gina Bianchi, Interim Director of the School of Nursing Teresa Gulley, Interim Associate Director of the School of Nursing Audra Trump, President of the Greater Decatur Chamber of Commerce Mirinda Rothrock and senior Nursing major Quincy Collings. 

The $3.2 million, 14,733-square-foot facility is located at 1099 W Wood Street, formerly West Towne Square, and houses the Millikin School of Nursing, School of Exercise Science and Sport, and Pipe Dreams Studio Theatre. 

Jim Reynolds and Rodney Davis
Millikin President Jim Reynolds (right) speaks with former member of the U.S. House of Representative Rodney Davis ’92 (left). 

“I'm not certain that anything I can say today would match the excitement we all feel at the renovations made to support our Health Sciences programs. I'm proud of the facility, but more importantly, I have a deep and abiding pride in what this will mean to the campus and our students,” Reynolds said. “When we began this project, we did so with the belief that our work as a university in this endeavor should lift the values of community, excellence, and respect for all persons.  Many of you see a facility that will educate and train nurses today, but I see a vision of hope and a commitment to lifting others through education, wellness, and high-quality healthcare.”

A generous gift by Susan Campbell supported the creation and naming of the Campbell Family Nursing Simulation Center. The Campbell Family has a passion for the nursing field and hopes this new, state-of-the-art facility will provide exceptional instruction for students to become highly trained, committed, dedicated, compassionate leaders in the healthcare profession. 

The Campbell Family Nursing Center provides simulation rooms that mimic a doctor's office, obstetrics/pediatrics, and hospital room settings. Control rooms with two-way mirrors allow instructors to monitor the simulation rooms and control what happens to the “patients," which are high-tech "simulator” mannequins. 

Susan Campbell
Millikin alum Susan Campbell '68 speaks at the ribbon cutting ceremony.

Campbell is a former Millikin School of Nursing student and, along with her late husband, R. Michael Campbell ‘67, have been very active Big Blue alumni and were the co-recipients of the 2016 Alumnus of the Year award, the highest alumni award presented by Millikin.

“I'm very honored on behalf of the entire Campbell family to be able to help dedicate this new Nursing Simulation Center, which is very important for student training,” Campbell said. “It is important as they take the first steps into their careers, and Millikin has always had such a good Nursing program. It's well known literally throughout the country, and people recognize Millikin’s Nursing program. I'm just very thankful to be able to do this today, and I'm anxious to cut the ribbon and get my tour.”

Millikin senior Quincy Collings, from Mattoon, Ill., shared her thoughts on getting to use the new facility and said thank you on behalf of the Nursing classes to come that will be able to utilize the Health Science Center. 

Quincy Collings
Millikin Nursing student Quincy Collings shares her experience learning in the Health Sciences Center.

“Even though I've only had a short time in this building, it has made a lasting impression on my Nursing education and future career. As one of the eight senior students in the first-ever senior Nursing Simulation Class, I've seen firsthand how this new building and technology will transform the Nursing curriculum here at Millikin,” Collings said. “Spending many hours in this building during my last semester here, I have gained experiences and opportunities I never thought I would get before starting my first job as a nurse.  Being able to use the Simulation Lab and having hands-on experiences has made me confident and ready to transition to becoming a full-time nurse at St. Louis Children's Hospital in just a few weeks.

“I would like to express my deepest gratitude to all the donors and everyone who has made generous contributions to this new building and Simulation Lab. Your dedication to advancing education and health care will make a profound difference in the lives of current and future students.”

Following the ceremony, visitors could take a tour of the new facility and see first-hand what Millikin’s Nursing students will get to enjoy. 

Simulation Center tours
Guests take a tour of Millikin's Campbell Family Nursing Simulation Center.

Along with the Campbell Family Nursing Simulation Center, the Health Sciences Center also features a Health Assessment Lab where Nursing students can sharpen their skills, a collaborative graduate learning space, and office space for faculty and staff.