Dramatic renos at BU’s Winnipeg campus support psychiatric nursing expansion

BU President Dr. David Docherty speaks with Manitoba Minister Janice Morley-Lecomte at the unveiling of the newly renovated spaces.

WINNIPEG – Bright, airy, and well-lit spaces, filled with high-tech equipment help support an expanded class of psychiatric nursing students at Brandon University’s campus in Winnipeg.

In fact, 50 per cent more students than before are already using the space, thanks to renovations over the past year and new funding from the province.

“We have increased our intake to 60 students every year in the Winnipeg program,” said BU Dean of Health Studies Linda Ross. “That of course required more space here.”

The newly renovated space brings larger classrooms, modern facilities — including realistic mannequins and electronic beds — additional office spaces, and dedicated student space to BU’s Winnipeg campus, which is located in the Rice Centre building on Portage Avenue downtown.

“As we move forward, the future of psychiatric nursing education and also the future of the profession of psychiatric nursing in Manitoba, is very, very bright,” Ross said.

Also bright is the space itself. The renovations brought lighter walls, more natural light, and splashes of BU Gold throughout.

“This is a modern energetic space with bigger and better BU branding — a space to create memories for all our existing and new students to come,” said BU’s Physical Plant director Michael McCormick, who managed the $2.1 million project from start to finish. “Our turnaround time was super tight — just seven months from funding approval to occupancy.”

Supply chain challenges meant a delay on getting some of the furniture, so desks and chairs were temporarily brought in from Brandon to make sure students could be in the space on time. The new furniture has since arrived and completes the space.

“We’re proud of the new space, and just as proud of the partnership we built with the Faculty of Health Studies and especially the Department of Psychiatric Nursing and to design and build this attractive, energy efficient and sustainable space,” McCormick said. “Together, we created a welcoming learning environment for our students, staff and faculty.”

Some of those staff, faculty, and students were joined by dignitaries to visit and tour the space in a ceremony earlier this month to officially open the renovations. A cheer greeted the ceremonial ribbon snipping, which followed a brief program.

“These are the days that remind us why we do what we do,” said BU President David Docherty. “These are the days that remind us why this is our calling — to be able to provide trained experts who will be able to go out and help people in society who need that help, in every walk of life.”

For more information on the four-year Bachelor of Science in Psychiatric Nursing (B.Sc.P.N.) program, which is available both in Brandon and in Winnipeg, see BrandonU.ca/Health-Studies.


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