Georgetown University’s Newspaper of Record since 1920

The Hoya

Georgetown University’s Newspaper of Record since 1920

The Hoya

Georgetown University’s Newspaper of Record since 1920

The Hoya

Science Center Underway

After construction of the planned science center was halted amid the recession, the university has been given the green light to resume construction this semester as a result of a $6.9 million grant from the National Institutes of Standards and Technology.

“The receipt of this grant and moving forward on construction of a new science center are important steps in our long-term efforts to enhance science research and teaching space at Georgetown,” University Provost James O’Donnell said in a university press release.

ade possible by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, the funds were awarded to support the founding of the Institute for Soft Matter Synthesis and Metrology, a research program to be built within the science center. The grant will be allocated toward the construction of the entire 155,000 square-foot facility, which is slated to open in fall 2012.

“It would be accurate to say that without the NIST grant, the building would still be on hold,” Associate Dean Ali Whitmer wrote in an e-mail.

According to Whitmer, the activities of the institute will be funded by other research grants.

any students expressed excitement at the prospect of new science facilities.

“I felt that a lot of the facilities have been subpar up to this point. The addition of the new science center is a much needed addition that will enable the Georgetown sciences to compete with our peer institutions,” said Thomas Clifford (COL ’11), a pre-med student.

“I think it’s about time. I don’t think it is going to benefit [my] class, but it’s going to be good for the research facilities in the three buildings to come under one building,” said Mahlet Megra (COL ’12), also a pre-med student.

The university submitted a two-part grant proposal to NIST last July that outlined the building plans as well as research and activities that would occur within the institute.

“It is important to note that the new building will house the research and teaching labs for all three of the lab sciences: chemistry, physics and biology. So the impact will go beyond the institute to benefit the community in a larger way,” Whitmer wrote in an e-mail.

According to a university press release, moving some of the research labs currently housed in the Reiss Science Building and White-Gravenor Hall to the new science center will open up space for further expansion in the science departments.”

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