North Central College unveils new lab with virtual cadavers

North Central College in Naperville dedicated a new center for Health Sciences and Engineering Thursday evening.

The facility has several high tech additions which school officials say will help place North Central College "at the forefront of health science education."

Forget about learning about anatomy and diseases on an old-school cadaver, which are pricey and in short supply. North Central students have virtual cadavers.

"What they have within them are multiple authentic human bodies that have gone through MRI’s or CAT-scans," said Marci J. Swede, PhD, Dean of School of Education and Health Science at North Central College.

Dean Swede says tables, which are kind of like giant iPads, serve as virtual cadavers, allowing students to peer into the body like never before.

"What it allows us to do is isolate the anatomy really precisely and isolate certain body systems in a way you could never do in a cadaver," explained Swede.


Students also can get real world practice with mannequins who respond to mock medicine and more.

"Their heart rate will go up or their heart rate will go down. Or if a  student is practicing CPR or rescue breathing, it will collect the data to know are they pushing hard enough, are they doing it at the right speed," said Swede.

The facility is designed to be inclusive with gender neutral bathrooms, lactation rooms, plus private spaces where students can focus on their mental health.