Welcome to historic Everitt Laboratory, the new home of the Illinois Bioengineering Department. Following a two-year, $55 million renovation, the 124,000-square-foot building provides our students and faculty with state-of-the-art facilities necessary to educate the next generation of bioengineering health care innovators and leaders, while providing additional lab space for research that will improve the human condition.
On Friday, September 21st, we welcomed campus leadership to join Bioengineering faculty, staff, students, alumni, and friends in celebrating our inaugural semester in Everitt Lab. Prior to the event, we talked to a few key people involved in transitioning the legacy of Everitt Lab into bright futures for bioengineers.
With the renovation complete and Bioengineering faculty, students, and staff settling in, there are many ways for alumni and friends to contribute to this exciting endeavor.
“I am very confident when I say the new Everitt Laboratory’s impact will be felt for decades to come," said Rashid Bashir, Executive Associate Dean of the Carle Illinois College of Medicine and former head of Bioengineering. "The global health challenges we face are complex. They are difficult. Addressing them requires interdisciplinary breakthroughs from bright, compassionate, well-trained bioengineers, biomedical scientists, doctors, medical professionals, social scientists, and colleague from across campus.”
“In many ways, [Everitt Lab] is the physical manifestation of Bioengineering’s history—a place that brings together different disciplines to elevate human lives," said Illinois Provost Andreas Cangellaris. "What discoveries will be made here? What relationships will be forged here? What companies will be launched here? There’s so much promise, so much possibility, and it all starts today.”
Everitt Lab's central campus location enables Bioengineering to serve as a conduit for even more multidisciplinary research collaborations that promise to transform biology, medicine, the environment, and more. In fact, we estimate that nearly 700 faculty, staff, and students from across campus will work and learn in Everitt Lab every day.
"Together, we will develop new technologies for early diagnosis of cancer and infectious diseases, develop new prosthesis for the elderly and the disabled and new brain machine interfaces, develop new therapeutic devices and technologies for individualized and personalized medicine—and improve the human condition and the quality of life, reduce costs and extend lives by another 30 years," added Bashir.
Bioengineering is excited to carry on the legacy of the building's namesake, William L. Everitt, a noted educator, author, electronics communication researcher, and Illinois engineering dean, who played a key role in transforming the Illinois engineering campus after World War II into the research and education powerhouse it is today.
Everitt's work turned Illinois into a world-leader in electrical engineering and in engineering education. Those engineers went on to define microelectronics in the 1960s—seriously, Silicon Valley and the incredible changes and prosperity it has brought simply would not exist without Illinois Engineers.
“Of the three people who fundamentally changed engineering forever, only one has a name on a building,” said William Everitt III, referring to his grandfather. “So today we rededicate the Everitt Lab as the home of the Bioengineering department, located at the intersection of medicine, biology, and engineering. We do this as a tribute to the legacy of William L. Everitt and to his vision. We’re honored for his name to still be here.”
A very special thank you goes out to The Grainger Foundation, which provided a $20 million lead gift through its Grainger Engineering Breakthroughs Initiative to the College of Engineering to launch the renovation, and Jump Trading for providing a $10 million gift to establish the Jump Simulation Center, a unique, high-tech medical training facility for the Carle-Illinois College of Medicine and Bioengineering students.
The Jump Simulation Center combines actual medical equipment and the latest simulation technology to enhance student training in various settings, including an operating room, intensive care unit, and hospital/clinic patient room. This type of advanced training ultimately aims to improve patient health outcomes and lower health care costs.
Your investment will change lives. Please join us in supporting the next generation of Illini engineers.