BILLINGS — After 18 months of construction, the 135,000-square-foot Rocky Vista University College of Osteopathic Medicine in Montana in Billings is complete and showcased its state-of-the-art technology in the second quarter on Monday.
“We have technology that really supports learning,” said Becky Rogers, campus operations manager.
Montana’s first full-time medical school will focus on active learning. There are no lecture halls, only classrooms for group learning, such as reviewing case studies. The building is also filled with simulation rooms where projectors can turn four walls into a hospital room or an outdoor emergency, such as a drowning victim, that may be encountered. All hyperrealistic simulations are complete with realistic mannequins that can breathe and receive IVs. During the tour, a model was in labor.
Students will also learn how to use virtual reality glasses.
“Through the glasses, they can get inside the body, inside the heart, get into the bloodstream, and just explore things that you couldn’t explore without the use of technology,” Rogers said. .
Eighty students are expected to be in Rocky Vista’s first class, starting in mid-July. The college’s founding dean and vice president, Dr David Park, said they had a plan for housing, partnering with Stock Development.
“We recognize housing is a challenge,” Park said. “[They have] committed to building 720 new apartments, directly adjacent to our property.
The main campus is on the west side of Shiloh Road near the intersection with Monad Road.
According to Park, 36 apartments have already been built and students and staff will be given priority.
“We are really excited that the students are coming here in July. We’ve worked hard for this moment and we can’t wait,” Rogers said.