Morrow, GA— In what is sure to lead to an economic boost for South Metro Atlanta and fill much needed job vacancies in the science industry, the doors of the new science building at Clayton State University are officially open.
A ribbon cutting ceremony was held Thursday, September 17 for the $25.15 million (design, construction & equipment) Lakeview Discovery and Science Center building. It will benefit the university’s 7,000 students as well as the growing population of undergraduate research students. Currently, Atlanta’s Southern Crescent has a critical need for more graduates with STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics) skills, especially in the areas of nursing, healthcare management, and science education.
“Imagine the countless opportunities we have created” said Dr. Nasser Momayezi, Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences.
Senator Jack Hill, Chairman of the Senate Appropriations Committee gave much of the credit to Governor Deal for finding the funds to fund construction. “I spoke with Governor Deal last night”, Hill said in his remarks to the large crowd. “He agrees that this building represents an important and a badly needed investment in facilities to enhance STEM education opportunities for jobs in this century.”
The 64,000 square foot building stands three stories tall, and planning and construction took nearly 10 years to complete due to a recession.
“Ten years is a very long time. We celebrate the challenges that the Board of Regents and GSFIC went through keeping this project on track during the worst recession that any of us have seen in our lives,” said Kevin Kuntz, President of the Southeast Division of McCarthy Business Companies, Inc.
The facility features stacked biology and chemistry suites that integrate research, as well as prep and teaching labs. It also consists of classrooms, seminar space, faculty offices and a vivarium.
“A credit card and passport may open the door to travel anywhere in the world, but it’s educational experiences that enables students to capitalize on these opportunities,” revealed Sachin Shailendra, a Regent with the University System of Georgia Board of Regents.
Shailendra added, “The laboratory and classrooms within this building, along with the knowledge and wisdom your professors will share, I expect, will provide the students of this university and the state of Georgia with excellent credentials for competing now and into the future.”
The Lakeview Discovery and Science Center is Georgia Peach Belt Green Building Certified. The Peach program recognizes buildings owned or managed by the State of Georgia that optimize energy performance, increase the demand for materials and furnishings produced in Georgia, improve the state’s environmental quality, conserve energy, protect Georgia’s natural resources and reduce the burden on the state’s water supply.
State Representative Carl Rogers of Gainesville, Chairman of the House Committee on Higher Education, expressed his optimism for the opportunities the new science center will create for current and future students at the university, “Hopefully the policies we support will assure access to a life-learning experiences that helps them in finding a personally rewarding career.”
Clayton State University’s main campus is located in Morrow, GA, and in 2012, it was ranked third among state universities in Georgia in economic impact by the University of Georgia’s Selig Center for Economic Growth. The University has also been recognized by U.S. News and World Report for having the most diverse student body among comprehensive baccalaureate-level colleges and universities in the Southern United States.
“This is an institution which has received support, and we will continue to support the entire South Metro Atlanta area,” said Clayton State University President, Dr. Thomas Hynes.
On hand for Thursday’s ribbon cutting ceremony were several notable dignitaries, including Georgia State Senator Gail Davenport and Georgia State Representatives Demetrius Douglas, Sandra Scott, and Mike Glanton.
For a look at our full gallery from this event visit http://www.clayton.edu/VP-Business-Operations/Science-Building.