A New Foundation for Fido

Construction | No groundbreaking ceremony would be complete without turning over a little dirt. So when Penn’s School of Veterinary Medicine launched construction of its $54 million Teaching and Research Building in April, it called upon a true digging expert to help out: a black Labrador retriever named Bailey.

The heavier digging was scheduled to begin in June. Designed by Ballinger/ Polshek Partnership architects, the new building will open in the fall of 2006, adjacent to the Veterinary School, and will feature two floors of teaching and library space, two floors of research laboratories, and a basement vivarium to house rodents (primarily mice) for experimentation. “The school has needed a [new teaching and research] facility for a very long time, a facility that really will support its pioneering work,” noted President Rodin, at the groundbreaking. “Soon it will have a building that will allow this school to break new ground, not only in veterinary medicine but in areas of medicine that have many important implications for human health.”

To give one example, Rodin cited collaboration between Penn medical and vet schools in the area of comparative medical genetics. “Scientists from these two schools are learning together how sets of genes work to produce the complex language of development and how they malfunction to induce disease. Understanding these processes is still among the new century’s greatest scientific challenges and researchers at our vet school are really poised to lead the way.”

The hollow bone dug up by Bailey contained a citation—read aloud by Vet School Dean Alan Kelly—awarding the Bellwether Medal, the school’s highest honor, to Rodin for her leadership and fundraising support.

The building project is part of a $100 million fundraising campaign, the largest in the Vet School’s history, for which $79 million had already been raised at presstime. Other campaign goals include construction of an equine sports-medicine building at New Bolton Center, construction of an imaging and radiation-therapy center at the Matthew J. Ryan Veterinary Hospital (see related story on page 42), and endowed professorships as well as scholarship- and faculty-research endowments. —S.F.


2004 The Pennsylvania Gazette
Last modified 07/01/04


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