Mesa College Breaks Ground on New Allied Health Building

San Diego Mesa College broke ground this week on its new Allied Health Building. The $20 million, three-story, 49,000-square-foot instructional facility will house five degree and certificate programs in the following health care fields: Dental Assisting, Health Information Technology, Medical Assisting, Physical Therapist Assistant and Radiologic Technology.

            Located at the east entrance of Mesa College, the new health facility will be a cornerstone of the college, which is located in Kearny Mesa. The project is funded by Proposition S Construction Bond, which was approved by San Diego voters in 2002.  It is the second instructional building to be built using Prop S funds. The Humanities, Languages and Multicultural Studies Building (which opened in January, 2003) and the Parking Structure and Police Substation, currently under construction, are also funded by Prop S funds. Expected completion date is August 2008.

            The four-year collaborative design process involved faculty, architects, health care professionals and regional experts in health care facility design and incorporates state-of-the-art “smart” classroom technology and ergonomically sound classroom and laboratory design. The three-story structure will include a computer lab, classrooms, and clinical dental, physical therapy and medical laboratories, plus faculty and staff offices. In addition to serving approximately 250 students annually, the facility will be used to provide vocational training and continuing education units (CEUs) for healthcare professionals throughout the region.

            In her remarks, Mesa College President Rita M. Cepeda said that the building will “train much needed professionals in high demand health occupations and support the ability of local health providers to provide high quality caring professionals.”

An important objective for all construction projects taken by the San Diego Community College District is to meet the highest Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) possible. The Allied Health Building has achieved LEED Silver Certification and there is a real possibility that it may achieve Gold Certification.

The project carries forwards sustainable design features begun with the Parking Structure and Police Substation including low-water use landscape, recycled materials content, high-efficiency energy systems, Energy-Star roof systems, and construction waste recycling. The building’s power requirements will also be offset in part by energy provided by solar panels which will be placed on the roof of the parking structure.

Project architect is Architect | Delawie Wilkes Rodrigues Barker. Contractor is McCarthy Building Companies, Inc., one of the nation’s leading higher education builders.

Among the largest community colleges in California and the nation, San Diego Mesa College is a fully accredited, two-year college offering 160 Associate Degree and certificate programs. The college’s excellent academic and career preparation programs cover a wide range of disciplines, making Mesa an important economic development catalyst and the number-one transfer institution in San Diego. Mesa’s premier programs include six programs in allied health fields, fashion design, architecture, multimedia, hospitality and event management, animal health technology, American Sign Language, and interior design. Mesa College is the largest of three colleges in the San Diego Community College District, which also includes City College, Miramar College and San Diego Continuing Education.


McCarthy Building Companies, Inc. is the nation’s 10th largest domestic general contractor (Engineering News-Record, May 2007) and among the top 10 education builders (Engineering News-Record, October 2006). The firm has been building in the education market for the last 50 years. Committed to the construction of high performance buildings, the company has managed construction or built more than 400 K-12 school projects nationwide, totaling more than $2 billion in construction value, and more than 200 higher education projects on more than 40 campuses. In addition to San Diego, McCarthy has offices in Newport Beach, Sacramento and San Francisco, Calif.; Phoenix; Las Vegas; St. Louis; Dallas and Atlanta. McCarthy is 100 percent employee owned. More information about the company is available online at