Michigan State University President Samuel L. Stanley Jr., MD, and other university leaders officially introduced the new STEM Teaching and Learning Center on the East Lansing Campus at the community at an inauguration ceremony. The building represents the first time in nearly 50 years that MSU has constructed a new university building with state funding.
“At MSU, we are constantly evaluating how we deliver world-class education while looking to the future – what is the future of teaching, what is the future or learning – it sucks. share more obvious than the new STEM teaching and learning center, ”said Stanley. “We looked beyond the simple construction of a building to see how the program is delivered and how spaces are used with an emphasis on the student experience. The potential impact is unlimited.
Designed with students in mind, 21st century classrooms and laboratories are specifically designed for bridging courses in biological sciences, chemistry, computer science, engineering and physics. When fully scheduled for one semester, there will be nearly 7,000 students in class in the building each week.
In addition, approximately 1,200 seats in common areas and meeting spaces are available to facilitate student collaboration. These spaces are open for studying or can be reserved for group projects and faculty office hours. Each area is fully accessible.
“The entire building is a resource for students, designed in every way as an academic space for the use of students,” said Provost and Executive Vice President of Academic Affairs Teresa K. Woodruff, Ph.D. “The immersive, flexible and interactive learning spaces will also support our faculty as they generate student interest in STEM-related degrees. ”
In 2018, the State of Michigan provided MSU with $ 29.9 million through its capital expenditure allotment for the construction of classrooms in the north and south wings of the building. The maximum that a construction project can receive from the state is $ 30 million.
“When you invest in higher education, you are contributing to student success and investing in our future,” said Dianne Byrum, MSU Board Chair. “I applaud the Michigan Legislature for recognizing the value that the STEM Teaching and Learning Center will bring to MSU and our state. “
The classrooms and laboratory spaces were built around the structure of the Shaw Lane Power Plant, which was decommissioned in the 1960s. Much of the plant’s original equipment was cleaned and preserved as part of the aesthetics of the building, including parts of the original boiler.
The supporting structure, frame, floors and ceilings of the north and south wings were constructed from cross-laminated timber, also known as solid timber. Among other benefits, solid wood promotes healthy forests and reduces carbon emissions.
The pre-program planning consultant was Sasaki. The design team consisted of Integrated Design Solutions, Ellenzweig and IDEO. The Granger Construction Company was the director of construction.