UCI held a groundbreaking ceremony for a new building dedicated to stem cell research Oct. 24. In May, UCI received $27.2 million from the state Independent Citizen’s Oversight Committee to build the facility, which will unify and strengthen the campus's fast-growing stem cell biology program and serve as a hub for research in Southern California. When completed in July 2010, the four-story, 100,636-square-foot building will house the UCI Sue and Bill Gross Stem Cell Research Center, dozens of laboratory-based and clinical researchers, a stem cell techniques course, a master’s program in biotechnology with an emphasis on stem cell research, and an array of programs and activities that involve and educate patients and the public. It also will contain the core stem cell laboratory and clinical space to see patients.
UCI has launched a $1 billion campaign to spark breakthrough discoveries and tackle issues of importance to people in their daily lives. Announced by Chancellor Michael Drake at the 2008 Medal Awards Oct. 4, the “Shaping the Future” campaign has raised $405 million of the goal during its “quiet phase.” The public campaign will run through 2015 and focus on increasing private support for five key areas: health, the environment, sustainable energy, educating tomorrow’s leaders, and embracing global opportunities in culture and business. UCI also launched a new campaign Web site, www.UCIFuture.com.
Construction of the new University Hospital at UC Irvine Medical Center has been completed four months ahead of schedule, and state health officials have issued a certificate of occupancy that concludes the first phase of the hospital’s development. The next steps include acquiring licenses to deliver patient care, installing new equipment, and moving in patients in early 2009.Chancellor Michael Drake said the effort, led by Wendell Brase, administrative & business services vice chancellor, and Rebekah Gladson, campus architect, advanced at a record pace even as other university building projects demanded their time and energy.
Construction has begun on a $221 million student housing project that combines desirable amenities with many green features and will allow UCI to lead the University of California system in the percentage of student population housed on campus. In addition, the project will enable UCI to move closer to its 50 percent on-campus housing goal. American Campus Communities of Austin, Texas, will oversee building and management of the project – its third at UCI. The new project will include 1,763 new undergraduate and graduate beds and will open in fall 2010.