St. John Fisher College Breaks Ground for New Science Building
Earlier today, St. John Fisher College officials broke ground on the College’s much anticipated Integrated Science and Health Sciences Building, slated to open in fall 2015. The new building is part of the College’s Building for the Future initiative.
Dr. Donald Bain, President of the College, was joined by Vic Salerno ’66, Chair of the Board of Trustees; members of the College’s administration; science faculty; and students. Also present were Lieutenant Governor Bob Duffy; Senator Joseph Robach; Senator Ted O'Brien; Assemblyman Mark Johns; and representatives from the Finger Lakes Regional Economic Development Council, the Empire State Development Corporation, and the Kilian J. and Caroline F. Schmitt Foundation, all of whom are helping to support the building project. The George I. Alden Trust is also a partner.
“The College has experienced tremendous growth in the sciences, in fact, we have seen our enrollment increase threefold in the natural sciences in the last several years,” said President Bain. “We recognize that in order to build for the future, we must expand our infrastructure of laboratories, classrooms, and collaborative learning spaces. And this new building will afford our students an opportunity to participate in even more vibrant and relevant programs, ultimately giving them not only a degree, but a very competitive edge as well.”
In the past seven years, the number of nursing, biology, and chemistry majors has nearly doubled and the College has hired 13 new undergraduate science faculty members. The College currently produces approximately 106 math, science, and technology graduates, as well as 164 undergraduate nurses. In the master’s and doctoral programs, the Wegmans School of Nursing produced a total of 44 graduates this year, while the Wegmans School of Pharmacy doctoral program produced 76 pharmacists. Approximately 77 percent of college graduates in science and nursing end up working in the region and New York State. In addition, the number of students participating in research courses in the areas of biology, chemistry, or science scholars has increased from 80 students to 105 students from 2009 to 2014, a 31% increase.
The College is building the $14 million academic facility, and investing $2.4 million into the renovation of the existing Skalny Science Center. While the new building is expected to be ready in 2015, the Skalny Science Center renovation should be complete by fall 2016.
With 31,000 square feet, and a U.S. Green Building Council LEED-certified design, the state-of-the-art building will include: two 100-seat flexible learning spaces; teaching laboratories for general chemistry, biochemistry, and physical chemistry; a lab prep room; breakout space for student collaboration; cross-disciplinary research space; two multipurpose labs and core facilities for tissue culture, nanobiology, and aquatic research; additional meeting spaces; and faculty offices.
Empire State Development President, CEO, and Commissioner Kenneth Adams said, “Congratulations to St. John Fisher College on its groundbreaking. This building will provide students with a new educational haven where they can build the skill sets necessary to excel in key growth industries.”
Rendering provided by LaBella Associates.
Learn more about the Integrated Science and Health Sciences Building.