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Trustees to consider architect for new Student Health and Wellness Center

The Board of Trustees will consider the architect for a new Student Health and Wellness Center, among other topics, at their meeting this weekend.

The new building would allow Counseling and Psychological Services, the Student Health Center and the Wellness Center to be located in a single location, said Sue Wasiolek, assistant vice president for student affairs and dean of students. The new center would also include a pharmacy and offer services such as acupuncture, radiology and massage therapy.

Vice President for Student Affairs Larry Moneta estimated that the center would cost around $30 million and would be located near Rubenstein Hall.

"This has been in the works for over two years," Wasiolek said. "I started walking around campus and looking where it would be and started talking about how important I thought it was for students, so tomorrow we will go in front of the Facilities and Environment Committee of the Board to get approval for an architect."

Wasiolek did not disclose what architecture firm was being reviewed .

In addition to discussing the new center, the Board will review six new degree programs. The master's degrees will include bioethics and science policy; historical and cultural visualization; statistical science; medical physics; and economics and computation. If the medical physics degree is approved, it will be the third graduate degree approved for Duke Kunshan University. The Trustees will also consider adding a Ph.D. program in biostatistics.

Faculty expressed concern over the proliferation of master's degree proposals at the Academic Council meeting Nov. 21, noting that additional programs could negatively impact classroom dynamics and create additional burdens for faculty members already teaching undergraduates.

Michael Schoenfeld, vice president for public affairs and government relations, said the decision to increase the number of program offerings has been an ongoing discussion among the Trustees. He added that evolving the type of master's and Ph.D. programs offered reflects the strength of the University.

"If the degrees were frozen in time you would have a different University," Schoenfeld said. "The important thing is that all these are generated by faculty."

The Trustees will also hear a presentation about the library system from Deborah Jakubs, Rita DiGiallonardo Holloway University Librarian and vice provost for library affairs.

Jakubs said she plans to talk to the Trustees about how libraries have changed over time, evolving from a repository of books to a "dynamic catalyst for intellectual conversation."

She noted that students are asking more complicated questions than they did in the past and rely on librarians to help guide them through the "richness" of the libraries' collections. As student demand for resources becomes higher, libraries all over are challenged to continue digitizing collections for student and faculty use.

Rising costs associated with the digitization process require increased financial support for the Duke libraries to keep forward, Jakubs said.

"A relatively small portion of our budget is for doing innovative things," she said. "So we've been creative in getting grants and finding other ways to do innovative things."


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