UNC officially unveiled Roper Hall, the new 172,000 square-foot home of the university’s School of Medicine, in a special ceremony on Monday night. The building is named for Dr. Bill Roper, dean of the School of Medicine from 2004-2019. Roper also formerly served as both interim president of the UNC system and CEO of UNC Health. A release from the school said Roper Hall “offers innovative spaces where students can hone clinical skills and collaborate with learners from across the medical campus and state.”
“This is a special evening to celebrate both our medical students and Dr. Bill Roper, who this building is named after,” said Dr. Wesley Burks, current dean of the School of Medicine and CEO of UNC Health. “For our medical students, Roper Hall is built in a unique way – around you and your experience as a student here. It really is the beginning of your journey, as you go out from here to serve our patients and change how we practice medicine.”
Roper and Burks were joined by more than 300 people at the building’s grand opening, including UNC chancellor Kevin Guskiewicz and UNC System President Peter Hans.
“The work that will be done in this space is a reflection of Carolina’s unwavering commitment to serve through education and it will further empower Carolina’s pursuit of excellence as the leading global public research university in the nation,” Guskiewicz said.
The opening of Roper Hall comes after Berryhill Hall, the former home of the School of Medicine, was demolished in 2020. Roper Hall stands in the same space as the old building on South Columbia Street.
The building contains six floors of training space, including classrooms, seminar rooms, study spaces, an Active Learning Center, a student lounge and a wellness center. Though Monday night’s festivities marked the official opening, Roper Hall has been hosting classes since September 12. The School of Medicine’s 204-person Class of 2027 makes it the largest medical school in the state.
“Unquestionably, this is the medical school of the people of North Carolina,” said Roper. “It’s a great personal honor for me that this building is named Roper Hall. But it’s been an even greater honor and a privilege for me to be able to work with all of you – and the wonderfully dedicated others – across more than a quarter of a century.”
Featured image via UNC
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