At $120 Million, the facility and graduate programs housed inside are HPU’s single largest investment in history.
HIGH POINT, N.C., Oct. 20, 2017 – Congdon Hall is a 220,000-square-foot, state-of-the art health care education facility that shines from floor to ceiling when you step inside.
Two academic schools, the Congdon School of Health Sciences and the Fred Wilson School of Pharmacy, are housed here and connected by a three-story atrium, where a 40-foot DNA helix sculpture glows with 8,400 watts of LED lights.
The facility’s quality reflects the importance of its mission – to prepare future health care providers – a mission made possible by two local families. Both were honored during a dedication ceremony on Oct. 19, where members of the community also got a first-look at the facility and the programs offered here, all of which reflect HPU’s largest investment in its history at $120 million.
Earl Congdon is executive chairman of the Old Dominion Freight Line, one of America’s leading transportation logistic companies with 10,000 employees. Fred Wilson is chairman of the board of Piedmont Chemical Industries, Inc. including five companies with plants in North Carolina, South Carolina and Tennessee.
“This is the center of the American dream,” said Dr. Nido Qubein, HPU president, to hundreds in attendance. “You are standing in the heart of what America is all about. That’s what High Point University is all about. This is a God, family and country school. We believe in the very virtues that built our nation.”
The event marks a new era for HPU in the field of health education. Graduate programs offered in these new academic schools include a pharmacy doctoral program, a physical therapy doctoral program and a physician assistant master’s program.
Qubein and students in the programs honored Wilson and Congdon for making the facility and their future careers possible. Both Congdon and Wilson were presented with a key to the university and a large framed photograph of the facility.
“It’s an honor to serve as the dean of a school poised to transform pharmacy and faculty who are changing the world for the better every day in a facility made possible by a donor with a tremendous vision for the future of our great city, who believed with patience that the ability to train the future health care providers of the world was in our DNA,” said Dr. Ron Ragan, dean of the Fred Wilson School of Pharmacy.
Throughout the building are impressive laboratory spaces including a pharmacology research lab, a gross anatomy lab, a human biomechanics and physiology lab, and more than a dozen simulation labs and spaces where real-world scenarios can come to life, including an operation room, emergency room, labor and delivery room, eight exam rooms, a pharmacy retail setting and pharmacy hospital setting.
“All of these things are right here in the heart of the Triad, an area that provides exceptional insight and many community members willing to help prepare the next generation of pharmacists,” Ragan said. “To the outside looking in, some may say we’ve found the illusive pot of gold. I say meticulous planning, quality facilities and targeted recruitment have laid the foundation for students to acquire the knowledge and skills to be leaders of pharmacy.”
Dr. Daniel Erb, dean of the Congdon School of Health Sciences, said the fruition of the facility and programs reminds him of a quote from Jonathan Swift. It reads, “Vision is the art of seeing what is invisible to others.”
“When I saw this quote, it really hit home as to what foresight, what forward thinking two men had to have to get these programs and these ideas up and running,” Erb said. “I would like to acknowledge Dr. Nido Qubein and Dr. Carroll (HPU Provost) for their effort, perseverance and grit in seeing this go through and bringing us to where we are today.”
“This is much more than a feather in the cap of HPU,” Erb added. “This building and all programs in it represent an improvement in the quality of life for the people of High Point, throughout the state of North Carolina, throughout the country and even globally. The programs here have already improved the individual and public population of health for many people, and that’s really what this is all about.”
A Community Open House for Congdon Hall will also be held on Oct. 26 from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. The event is free and open to the public, and it will include presentations from faculty, self-guided tours of the facility and complimentary blood pressure and pulmonary function health screenings.