The University’s Board of Regents approved a new home for the School of Nursing at their monthly meeting yesterday in the Pendleton Room of the Michigan Union — a deviation from their typical meeting space in the Fleming Administration Building as the board seeks a new permanent location to accommodate more attendees.

University Provost Philip Hanlon said the school’s current building — a former hospital built in 1913 — can’t be retrofitted to accommodate the use of models and other technologies for instruction. In addition to voting on the new school, the regents voted on a name change for Crisler Arena and addressed the hiring of an external auditor to investigate the University’s handling of the alleged possession of child pornography by a former University of Michigan Health System resident. The board also approved honorary degree recipients for the 2012 Spring Commencement ceremony and an increased budget for Yost Ice Arena renovations.

In an interview after the meeting, Hanlon said the new School of Nursing will be able to provide for increased resources.

“They want to greatly expand their use of simulated patients in their instruction,” Hanlon said. “They have these manikins (and) they can program them to have all sorts of symptoms and problems, and students can work on them as a first step before they run into real patients.”

According to a communication to the regents sent by Timothy Slottow, the University’s executive vice president and chief financial officer, the project is estimated to cost about $50 million. The 75,000-square-foot structure will also accommodate approximately 40 new faculty members that the School of Nursing plans to hire in the next decade.

Hanlon projected that groundbreaking on the building will take place within a year and a half, pending completion and regental approval of the architectural design. The current building will remain occupied, but Hanlon added that it is rapidly becoming less useful.

Crisler Arena becomes Crisler Center

The regents also voted to change the name of Crisler Arena to Crisler Center during yesterday’s meeting even though it has been called Crisler Center informally for months.

Addressing the regents, Slottow said because Crisler Center now contains training centers and retail shops, it is no longer appropriate to refer to the complex as simply an arena.

“Crisler Arena has expanded and been converted into many, many things beyond a basketball arena,” Slottow said.

University hires external auditor for child pornography case

In her opening remarks, Coleman shared with the regents that the University hired former senior auditor Fred White Jr. as the external auditor per the regents’ order. White will oversee the implementation of recommendations made by the earlier internal audit and will also serve as liaison for an external audit.

In May, a University of Michigan Health System staff member found a flash drive belonging to former resident Stephen Jenson and reported it to UMHS authorities. UMHS waited more than six months to report the incident to investigators and proceed with the case.

“We are making excellent progress in following up on the internal audit in the pediatrics residence case,” Coleman said.

Regents approve honorary degree recipients

In addition to Monday’s announcement that Sanjay Gupta, CNN’s chief medical correspondent, will serve as the keynote speaker at the 2012 Spring Commencement address and will receive a Doctorate of Humane Letters, a slew of other notable professionals will be in attendance to receive awards.

The regents approved that honorary degrees also be granted to The New Yorker’s Susan Orlean — who will deliver the Rackham Graduate School address — and Chris Van Allsburg, author of “The Polar Express” and “Jumanji,” who will also receive a Doctorate of Humane Letters.

Additionally, Richard Sarns, chairman of J.I. Harris & Associates, will receive a Doctorate of Engineering; J. Ira Harris, a former member of the University’s Investment Advisory Committee, will receive a Doctorate of Laws; and José Antonio Abreu, founder of a youth program for children in Venezuela and a prominent musician, will receive a Doctorate of Music.

Board approves increased budget for renovations to Yost Ice Arena

The regents also gave the green light for a $2-million increase yesterday for renovations to Yost Ice Arena — which is slated to include seating replacement and window installation — bringing the project total to $16 million, up from the initially approved $14 million.

In a communication to the regents, Slottow and Athletic Director Dave Brandon suggested the increase, in order to properly accommodate for the renovations.

“Due to a strong desire to include the alternates, and the fact that the bids received were higher than expected due to the cost of the steel and bleachers, we are recommending increasing the budget by $2 million,” Slottow and Brandon wrote.

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