HMEB provides dynamic training to future caretakers

By: Alina Avalos

In 2009, our College of Medicine leaders developed a vision for training medical students with a new curriculum that would better prepare them for advancing technologies and the fast-changing health care industry. This year, that vision came to life.

Named after the UF College of Medicine’s founding dean, the George T. Harrell, M.D., Medical Education Building opened its doors to students on July 29. The facility better replicates clinical settings for medical and physician assistant students with a dynamic, engaging and collaborative educational environment.

“The best medicine and patient care is delivered by interdisciplinary clinical teams — physicians, physician assistants, nurses, therapists and many other health professionals — who come together in examination rooms, operating rooms, intensive care units and many other spaces to help patients heal,” said Michael L. Good, M.D., UF College of Medicine dean.

Construction for the facility, located on the north edge of the UF Health Science Center campus on Newell Drive, began in 2013.

The old medical school, built more than 35 years ago, was designed to accommodate a model of education that no longer reflects today’s needs.

With a demand for more collaborative and interactive learning, a revised curriculum has been instituted to not only focus on small group and cooperative work, but also to combine basic science education and clinical practice in all four years of medical school.

“We have moved from the lecture hall to active, team-based learning in the same type of small-group environments that our students will encounter as practicing physicians and physician assistants,” Good said.

The first floor of the building features an atrium, admissions office, learning studios and the H. James Free, M.D., Center for Primary Care Education and Innovation. The second floor includes classrooms, learning spaces and the Office of Student Affairs. The top two floors — which include patient examination rooms, hospital rooms, classrooms and an experiential learning theater —are designed to provide simulation-based training to residents and health care professionals, in addition to students.

UF Health Shands CEO Ed Jimenez said, “Now we have individuals across disciplines engaging in simulation training together, which makes perfect sense because nobody works alone in a hospital setting.”

Every aspect of the building is designed to meet the educational and training needs of the students, residents and practicing health care providers, both today and in the future.

For a virtual tour, visit

Anaclerio Assessment Center

95,000 square feet

$46 million project

Spaces for collaboration, quiet study and hands-on interprofessional and team-based education

Design completion: September 2013

Groundbreaking: November 2013

Ribbon-cutting ceremony: July 2015