SDM RibbonCuttingALTON – State Senator Bill Haine (D-Alton) joined students, faculty, staff, guests and other elected officials to dedicate the new $9.5 million lab space for Southern Illinois University’s School of Dental Medicine in Alton on Monday.

The 18,000-square-foot John and Anna Markarian Multidisciplinary Simulation Laboratory offers students and instructors the ability to simulate procedures and gain practical experience before practicing in a clinical setting.

“The School of Dental Medicine is unique and vital part of SIU and Illinois. It is spectacular to see the school’s dedication to new technology and the state’s dedication to investing in our universities and professional colleges,” Haine said. “This lab is the latest addition to outstanding new facilities in the SIU system and in the Metro East—following the dedication of SIUE’s $52 million science building last month.”

The lab will house most of the classes for 100 pre-doctoral students and contains 60 simulation units, X-ray facilities and spaces for creating ceramic dental restorations.

John and the late Anna Markarian—for whom the building is named—are the parents of three successful dental school alumni who contributed financial gifts to the project.

“This addition to the School of Dental Medicine is not only a commitment to the University, but also a commitment to Southern Illinois,” SIU President Glenn Poshard said.

Construction of the lab began in October 2012. SIU received $4.1 million for the project from the state. Haine and Representative Dan Beiser (D-Alton) helped secure the funding as part of the state’s construction program in 2009.

“This will provide our students with all the tools, technology and confidence they need to offer the best possible care for patients,” SIUE Chancellor Julie Furst-Bowe said.

“There is a special blending of the old and the new: a state-of-the-art dental facility at one of the most venerable and oldest college campuses in the Midwest, Shurtleff College, where the dental school resides,” Haine said.

PHOTO ATTACHED: Haine, university officials and other guests pose as dental student Erin Syzdek cuts the ribbon for the $9.5 million lab.

From left: Deputy General Counsel for the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity Allen Mayer, Alton Mayor Brant Walker, Representative Jay Hoffman (D-Belleville), Senator Bill Haine (D-Alton), SIUE Chancellor Julie Furst-Bowe, Syzdek, John Markarian (partially hidden), Randall Markarian, dental school dean Bruce Rotter, SIU President Glenn Poshard, Ronald Markarian and John Markarian. (SIUE Marketing & Communications/Howard Ash)

Category: News Releases

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