NC CONNECT CENTERPIECE: New Appalachian State Health Sciences building celebrated

NC CONNECT CENTERPIECE: New Appalachian State Health Sciences building celebrated
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Visitors stop in front of a plaque recognizing donors Don and Vickie Beaver. Photo by Chase Reynolds

By Elizabeth Wall, University Communications. September 21, 2018. BOONE, NC – Appalachian State University cut the ribbon on the Connect NC Bond’s first completed project on Friday, Sept. 21. The Leon Levine Hall of Health Sciences building was completed on time and on budget. Levine Hall is Appalachian State University’s newest and largest academic building to date, and its design facilitates innovative and collaborative learning for thousands of students.

COVER IMAGE: Cutting the ribbon at the Levine Hall of Health Sciences are, from left, Appalachian Provost and Executive Vice Chancellor Darrell Kruger; Student Government Association President DeJon Milbourne; Appalachian Regional Healthcare System CEO Chuck Mantooth, Dean of the Beaver College of Health Sciences Dr. Marie Huff; Executive Director of the Levine Foundation Tom Lawrence, University of North Carolina President Margaret Spellings, Appalachian State University Chancellor Dr. Sheri Everts, N.C. Representative Nelson Dollar, University of North Carolina Board of Governors member C. Philip Byers, Vickie Beaver, Don Beaver and Chair of the Appalachian State University Board of Trustees James M. Barnes. Photo by Marie Freeman

The five-story, 203,000 sq. ft. Levine Hall was the first project funded by the NC Connect Bond, a bond approved by the citizens of North Carolina in 2016 by a two-to-one margin.

Voters entrusted Appalachian with a significant responsibility. We are pleased to be able to rise to this challenge by facilitating a response to the critical health care needs in the rural areas of our state.

Chancellor Sheri Everts addresses the large ribbon-cutting crowd. Photographic image by Chase Reynolds

University of North Carolina President Margaret Spellings, who attended the ceremony, said, “I know Appalachian State and all of those who study in Levine Hall will continue paying back North Carolinian voters with their impact and accomplishments for years to come.”

“When voters approved this project in 2016, they entrusted Appalachian with a significant responsibility,” Chancellor Sheri Everts said. “We are so pleased to be able to rise to this challenge by facilitating a response to the critical health care needs in the rural areas of our state.”

The facility will enable Appalachian to graduate more professionals in health sciences, one of the identified critical workforce areas for North Carolina.

The 1 p.m. ceremony included tours, speeches, music and refreshments for the more than 350 people in attendance.

Levine Foundation Executive Director Tom Lawrence speaks at the September 21, 2018 ribbon cutting for the newly constructed Levine Hall of Health Sciences at Appalachian State University

In addition to Spellings and Everts, the roster of speakers included Executive Director of the Levine Foundation Tom Lawrence, University of North Carolina Board of Governors C. Philip Byers ’85, N.C. House Rep. Nelson Dollar ’83 ’85, Student Government Association President DeJon Milbourne, who is a senior accounting major from Fayetteville, and Appalachian’s Provost and Executive Vice Chancellor Darrell Kruger.

The Levine Foundation made a $5 million donation for furnishings and outfitting the laboratories and offices. In his remarks, Lawrence said the building was “so much more than bricks and mortar… Entire communities have needs that can go unmet simply because they call the remote mountains of Appalachia home. Of these needs, we know healthcare is one of the most critical.” Appalachian’s leadership, he continued, had the vision … “to build a state-of-the-art teaching and research facility focused on first-class healthcare. The Levine Hall of Health Sciences will serve as space for bright, energized students to convene during their time at ASU… as they help create a responsive, clinical and community approach to rural healthcare.”

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