MEETING ACADEMIC AND MEDICAL STANDARDS
The 2017 Fall opening of Sinclair College’s Ned J. Sifferlen Health Sciences Center marks the consolidation of 53 degree and certificate allied health programs from nine buildings into one structure. Emergency Medical Services (EMS), Dental Hygiene, Occupational Therapy and others are now housed in a $31.5M facility designed to simulate a real world medical workspace.
“By the time our students interview for a position in a hospital or physician’s office, they have already spent two years in a dynamic instructional setting that looks and operates like their future workplace,” says Sinclair Construction Management Specialist Jim Fauzey. “They learn procedures on devices fully-equipped with functioning compressors, gases and vacuums.” The building’s two-story lobby rivals the grandeur of a major healthcare system reception area. Teaching stations in the Dental Health Science program accommodate professional treatment of actual dental patients two days a week. Surgical Technology students have the opportunity to prepare for their career in a space that perfectly mirrors a working HAMILTON operating room with additional area to host groups of students.
“Our challenge on this project is to recreate everything about a hospital while designing at a scale that facilitates teaching moments,” says John Fabelo, AIA, partner at the architectural firm LWC. Hamilton Casework Solution’s comprehensive experience delivering medical and educational solutions proved invaluable for the Center’s hybrid environment. Surfaces, for example, needed to fulfill both academic and hygienic needs. “Typically you would not be concerned with occupants in a hospital environment sitting on or throwing heavy backpacks on a work surface,” says John. “HAMILTON is very aware of the requirements of Sinclair and worked with us to create counter tops that were structurally stronger and thicker than the healthcare standard.
”The centerpiece bench on the second floor of the entrance hall, tailor-made by HAMILTON, provides another example of the dual nature of this project. “We could not finalize design of the bench until the rails were installed. There were a lot of moving parts as well as a grade change on the ramp,” says John. “Although the space is a warm, highly-functional and cozy area for students to relax while they wait for their class, it doesn’t read as an empty bench when no one is sitting in it. The bench is an integral component of the grand gesture of the hall.
”HAMILTON’s capabilities also supported Sinclair Facilities Department’s process. “While casework throughout the building features blonde wood finishes and the same surface material, we encourage customization by each department. HAMILTON bent over backwards to implement those requests.” Radiology asked for a pullout drawer for bones and glass doors to showcase historical artifacts in wall cabinets. EMS needed life-sized heavy-duty drawers to store SIM mannequins and locked storage. Surgical Technology required cabinets that opened on both sides.“HAMILTON is really invested in the success of the project,” says Jim. “From my standpoint as a Project Manager, that means a lot!”