Featured Testimonial About Creighton University
We thank God for the life and accomplishments of a business icon and his wife, who chose to share with us this phenomenal facility. We assure all benefactors of this project that we will steward every gift wisely.
- Learn more about the CL and Rachel Werner Center.
- Photo gallery: See what the facility looks like on the inside.
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In September, about 100 Creighton alumni, friends, faculty, staff and community leaders — including Nebraska Gov. Jim Pillen and Omaha Mayor Jean Stothert — celebrated the opening of the CL and Rachel Werner Center for Health Sciences Education with a dedication ceremony.
The facility’s lead donors CL and Rachel Werner joined Creighton President the Rev. Daniel S. Hendrickson, SJ, PhD, to cut the ribbon and formally open the University's new, state-of-the-art home for the health sciences.
“We're very fortunate at Creighton for the recent opening of several beautiful buildings,” said Father Hendrickson. “Thanks to the generosity of alumni, friends and foundations, each addition has propelled the University forward, expanding our mission of academic excellence and service to others.”
Located immediately east of U.S. Highway 75, the 145,000-square-foot, five-story CL and Rachel Werner Center embraces Creighton’s commitment to interprofessional education. The facility brings future physicians, nurses, OTs, PTs, physician assistants and EMS technicians all together to learn and work under one roof. An estimated 5,900 students, faculty, staff and visitors will use the building every year. (You can learn more about the CL and Rachel Werner Center here.)
The donor-driven project’s cost, which included renovations to the Criss Complex, was $90 million.
For CL — founder, board chairman emeritus and the former longtime CEO of Werner Enterprises — and Rachel Werner, their lead gift to the building continues a long legacy of Creighton support. Over the years, they have made gifts to the School of Law, the Heider College of Business, Athletics and more.
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Quotes and images from the ceremony
Creighton President the Rev. Daniel S. Hendrickson, SJ, PhD
“We thank God for the life and accomplishments of a business icon and his wife, who chose to share with us this phenomenal facility. We assure all benefactors of this project that we will steward every gift wisely. We promise our students, aspiring physicians, nurses, therapists, pharmacists, mental health practitioners, and so many more that we will do everything in our power to ensure they step into the workforce well-prepared to take on the responsibilities they will shoulder. And most importantly, we thank God to bless our efforts with wisdom, with integrity, with dignity in every classroom, laboratory, office, lounge and study space.”
Omaha Mayor Jean Stothert
“Father Hendrickson, the city of Omaha is really proud of our excellent partnership with Creighton University, especially as health care and health education grows as an important sector of Omaha's strong and diverse economy. Creighton now offers another compelling reason to attract the best and the brightest to our city, with innovative technologies to train and prepare health care professionals and to keep them here in Omaha. We benefit from their educational experience. They benefit from a great, growing city where they can find meaningful employment and make a difference.”
Nebraska Gov. Jim Pillen
“I can't just say enough to thank you, CL and Rachel. My father taught my brothers and me a number of things, but one was there are two kinds of people. There are givers and takers. Be a giver. It's the richest way to possibly live, and on behalf of the state of Nebraska, it's an incredible privilege for me to be here and say, ‘thank you for being the ultimate giver.’”
Nizar Ghoussaini, BS’75, MS’76, Chair, Creighton Board of Trustees
“I'm thrilled to be standing here today at the culmination of what has been a substantial amount of planning, preparation and prayer to end up with this beautiful structure. It is no secret that Creighton University has a true presence in health sciences education dating back to 1892, but in recent years Creighton has garnered increased national recognition as a leader in interprofessional education of health sciences students. Creighton not only educates health care professionals; it forms leaders in their fields.”
Kandis McCafferty, PhD, RN, Director of simulation-based learning, Director of Student Health Education and Compliance
“Personally, to be a part of this dedication is an incredible honor. As a member of the team who supported the process of bringing health science education to Phoenix — and now dreaming, seeing and planning for a space in Omaha that brings our health sciences disciplines together with intention and with a lessons-learned-approach — these are truly highlights of a health care professional’s career.”
The Rev. James Clifton, SJ, Associate Dean, Mission and Identity, School of Medicine
“We at Creighton University are overflowing with gratitude for the gift of the CL and Rachel Werner Center for Health Sciences Education, for all that it is and for all that it means to the next generations of healers and each and every patient they'll ever touch. Even in these first few weeks, we clearly see the blessing of bringing together the very latest technology and active learning in groups, large and small Ignatian reflection and pedagogy, the best science and clinical knowledge interwoven with ethics and the humanities, all with dedicated mission-driven faculty, staff and students from all the health professions.”
Alexandra Van Cleave, BS’23, School of Medicine student, Class of 2027
“The CL and Rachel Werner Center has just opened its doors to us, and I have already established new relationships with my peers in various disciplines. From the open-air fourth-floor patio to the many simulation areas and classrooms, I have just been taking it all in, and, right now, I can only imagine what my next four years will be like.
“I am grateful for each step in my path to becoming a future leader in health care. And I am thankful for the opportunity to continue my journey in the CL and Rachel Werner Center.”
More images from the event
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