Frances Carlson and Madeleine Nicks
With the addition of new science classrooms and lab space comes many hours of construction.
The new facilities on campus will be exciting for both teachers and students, after the lengthy construction process ends.
The Center for Science and Innovation will be an excellent environment for teacher collaboration and is expected to be finished sometime in early 2021.
The new state-of-the-art equipment will allow students to learn cutting-edge biotechnology and chemistry.
Upper school chemistry teacher, Katie Pointer is hopeful about the completion of the new buildings and the latest technology that will be available to students.
“Both spaces contain additional technology that will allow students to perform a broader scope of research safely.”
The new STEM Research and Innovation Lab will create opportunities for hands-on design through 3D printing, power tools, and circuit design, as well as the digital creation of augmented reality, virtual reality, and 3D CAD content.
With the new space and tools, students will be able to delve deeper into experiments and develop a greater analysis of their projects.
A unique feature that Pointer is particularly looking forward to is the addition of fume hoods, which work by removing dust, gases and fumes out of the lab exhaust system as air flows into the hood.
She is also looking forward to “the outdoor classroom space that I will utilize for Marine Science experiments.”
One downside of the construction process is the noise during school.
Although this is inevitable, it can be a distraction and affect students’ learning, especially on the west side of the school’s campus.
“I have public speaking in the library, and the noise can often interrupt people’s speeches and can make it harder to hear the teacher,” sophomore Michael Wang said.
Having a class near the construction site can be a challenge, but it will be worth waiting once the finished construction is done. “In our STEM class, the sounds of hammers can get distracting and make it harder to concentrate on our work,” sophomore Thomas Couvillion said.
The construction project is the most recent addition to the upper school campus in the last 10 years.
“The Center for Science and Innovation gives our students every possible advantage in preparing them to succeed in tomorrow’s world,” said Staci Richard, Science Department Chair. Richard hopes the new facilities will allow her students to better collaborate with UCSB and expand research opportunities.