A new addition to the beautiful Southeastern University campus has arrived just in time for the Fall semester and includes an exhibit that is sure to draw visitors.

The unveiling of the new College of Natural Health and Sciences Building takes place this week at the local liberal arts university. This $6 million installment, which includes 28,000 square feet of academic space, follows the development of a four-year Pre-licensing Nursing Program that the university has made available in only recent years.

What was “a dream just a short few years ago,” President Ingle noted, “and in fact, a year ago was just an unsightly cement foundation” is now a gorgeous new installment with a 144-seat auditorium, 22 faculty offices, four exam rooms, four patient-care rooms, two chemistry labs, two computer labs, and one nursing lab. The new building is sure to offer more room for comprehensive, as well as practical, learning for Pre-licensing Nursing students throughout their college careers. The nursing simulation lab will offer students the ability for real hands-on experience, with life-like patient simulators to hook up IVs, take blood pressure, and listen for a heartbeat.

To celebrate the new building, SEU brought in a fossil of a juvenile mastodon on loan from the South Florida Science Museum and Aquarium at West Palm Beach, to be exhibited upon the building’s official opening. Her name is Suzie the Mastodon.

The “brown stones” were discovered in Okeechobee Boulevard in 1969 by a 13-year-old at work while driving his mini tractor. The bones were then excavated by Dr. Stanton, a professor at Palm Beach Atlantic College. Students and members of the Gem and Mineral Society of the Palm Beaches hosted “Build Up” work nights until the 90-percent remaining bones were pieced together to build what is now known as Suzie the Mastodon. Before certainty of its sex, Stanton named the mastodon “Sue” after the popular Jonny Cash song of 1969, “A Boy Named Sue.”

In celebration of the unveiling of the College of Natural Health and Sciences Building, SEU welcomes Suzie the Mastodon, the only female of the species visible in a Florida museum. All of Lakeland is invited to come observe this rare species for a limited time.

The official ribbon-cutting for the College of Natural Health and Sciences Building will take place on August 20 at 10 a.m. Make sure to stop by and see the rare sight of Suzie the mastodon at SEU and tour the new facilities as well.

Additional available times for viewing Suzie are Mondays through Fridays, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. To arrange a time to see Suzie, contact the Southeastern University’s Advancement office at (863) 667-5558 or email advancement@seu.edu. School and group tours are welcome to visit Suzie as well.

The loan of Suzie the Mastodon is set through May of 2020.