Westmoreland County Community College debuts new science labs
After more than two years of planning and construction, officials at Westmoreland County Community College Friday debuted new cutting-edge labs and equipment in the school’s expanded Science Hall at its Youngwood campus.
The $9.8 million project added 18,500 square feet to Science Hall, including four labs, student study areas and a new café. It consolidates all of the college’s allied health and science programs under one roof and will house biology, microbiology and anatomy classes formerly held in Founder’s Hall.
Officials said staff began working with architects to plan the facility in early 2016.
“Every inch of the building is focused on students. From the lab, to the study areas, this building is just the next step by the college to move forward with its mission,” said WCCC Board of Trustees Chair Chad Amond.
“We wanted a space where students could learn by doing hands-on work in science and we could leverage our technology. We want to ensure our students are ready not just for the jobs that are available today, but also for the jobs of the future,” said Cynthia Proctor, dean of math, science and engineering and the school of business at WCCC.
The facilities that are being brought online this semester are equipped with 90 new microscopes, Ladybug 3-D transparency projectors and a new Leica 50 W microscope camera that can be connected to Wi-Fi allowing students to down load images from the device.
Proctor said all of the equipment will enhance the schools’ science programs. But the centerpiece that sets it apart from most community colleges is the seven-foot long Anatomage table that contains full-sized digital images from a real cadaver.
“You won’t find that at any other community college,” Proctor said of the device that will enhance students studies in anatomy and various health science and biology courses.
Deb Erdley is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Deb at 412-320-7996, [email protected] or via Twitter @deberdley_trib.