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CIHS under construction

Steel skeleton rises on campus

Construction milestone keeps Center for Integrated Health Studies on track to grow programs

Contact: ​Jeff Johnston

​Every health building needs a skeleton, and Central Michigan University's new Center for Integrated Health Studies now has one: The structural steel framework is up for the $26 million project.


Rockford Construction soon will place a CMU flag at the gable peak on the south side of the building to signify completion of the steelwork.

Site excavation for the 50,000-square-foot building began in March, before an April groundbreaking, and move in is scheduled for fall 2019, with the first classes in January 2020.

Building excitement

Keep up on campus construction at "Big thinking, big progress."


The new structure connects to the existing complex built along Preston Street in 2004 and 2012 to house health professions and the College of Medicine.

"It's pretty much a seamless continuation of the existing building," Tom Masterson, dean of The Herbert H. and Grace A. Dow College of Health Professions, said in April.


Steel framework reveals how the new Center for Integrated Health Studies will blend with the existing Health Professions and College of Medicine buildings.

The need for health professionals is on the rise nationwide, and the new facility will enable students from multiple high-demand fields of study to learn and practice collaboratively, a best practice in health care education.

Masterson said the college's "maxed out" physician assistant program in particular is expected to grow with the new building.

Other College of Health Professions programs are athletic training, communication sciences and disorders, environmental health and safety, exercise science: kinesiology, health administration, physical therapy, public health, physical education, and sport management.

The CIHS is the first new structure on campus since completion of the Biosciences Building in 2016 and an extensive renovation and addition to Grawn Hall in 2017.

"Our goal is to have the building enclosed by December, so we can provide temporary heat through the winter while working on the interior," said Andy Virkler, project manager with Facilities Management. "The highlight right now is the building shape as defined by the structural steel. One can see how this new wing complements the existing architectural shapes."

The Michigan Legislature allocated $19.5 million for the building in 2016. The rest of the money came from university reserves.

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