The University of Maryland and Virginia Tech plan to break ground today for a $12.5 million veterinary center in Prince George's County that will house classrooms and research laboratories for a regional veterinary college.
The Avrum Gudelsky Veterinary Center in Adelphi would be the first building constructed as part of the Virginia-Maryland Regional College of Veterinary Medicine.
The ground-breaking "marks a major step in development of the Virginia-Maryland Regional College of Veterinary Medicine," University of Maryland President John Toll said in a statement.
The 83,400-square-foot building, scheduled for completion in late 1989, also will house regional laboratories for the animal health section of the Maryland Department of Agriculture.
Currently, veterinary activities are housed on the school's College Park campus and at the Grayson Research Laboratory in College Park.
The center will allow students in the regional college to take classes on the Maryland campus while working at internships at government agencies in the Washington area.
In the past, Maryland residents studying veterinary medicine were forced to attend out-of-state colleges that had agreements with Maryland.
By 1990, however, all state residents studying in the field will be enrolled at the regional college.
The new center is named for Avrum Gudelsky, a young man who took interest in the health and well-being of animals.
Gudelsky was killed in 1978 in a motorcycle accident during the Grand Prix Race in Toronto. He was 31.
In his honor, the man's parents, Homer and Martha Gudelsky of Silver Spring, established in 1980 the Avrum Gudelsky Fund to support the university's research in agricultural and life sciences.
"The Gudelskys' generous support of our work in the agricultural and life sciences has greatly increased our research capabilities by giving us the flexible funds that are so vital to being responsive to the need for new knowledge in vital areas of veterinary medicine," Toll said.