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Eastern Virginia Medical School

Investing in Good Health for Hampton Roads


Microbiologist Neel Krishna, Ph.D. joined the Eastern Virginia Medical School faculty in 2003 for the right reasons – high-caliber students, collaborations with excellent researchers and EVMS’ commitment to training the best health professionals.

When deciding to come to EVMS he overlooked stark

classrooms and labs stuck in a 1970s time warp because “scientifically, I knew this was the right place for me.” Today Krishna is thrilled with an $80 million campus expansion and renovation that created a modern campus to match EVMS’ quality programs. He now teaches in interactive classrooms that let him easily call up diagnostic videos on multiple screens to bring a dose of reality into his lectures. New labs, a simulation center and a cancer center

help connect EVMS students to the latest technology in ways that encourage collaboration. “Nothing replaces a good professor,” Krishna says. “But technological advancements help make teaching more effec- tive using multi-media, which is what students expect today.” The 2011 expansion of the EVMS campus was

prompted by much more than changing technology. A state mandate to increase class size kick-started expansion plans. A larger campus allows EVMS to increase its medical school classes by 30%. This fall there will be 145 medical students in EVMS’ largest class. The expansion will enable the physician assistant and other EVMS programs to increase enrollment by up to 60% each. The goal is to stem projected shortages of health-care professionals in Virginia. In addition to the new classrooms and labs, EVMS

students are enjoying a new student center, an expanded bookstore, new study rooms and a grassy area perfect for taking a break between classes. The medical school’s recent transformation had many

partners, including the Hampton Roads Community Foundation. In 2010 the community foundation awarded a $1 million, five-year grant to EVMS from unrestricted funds for the building project. Grants from the community foundation’s donor-advised funds provided an additional

Dr. Neel Krishna (right) works with EVMS graduate student Amandeep Sandhu

$545,000 to help expand the campus. The revitalized campus helped make EVMS a top

choice for Brett Meeks, a University of Chicago graduate from Ohio entering his second year at EVMS. The new campus is “definitely a reason I came here,” Meeks says. “It is important to see EVMS making an investment in the future. This is a good place to spend four years.”

Over the decades, the community foundation has awarded $4 million in grants to EVMS and $863,000 in scholarships for 108 EVMS medical students. Nearly 1,000 Hampton Roads physicians are EVMS graduates.

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Photo by Glen McClure

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