Some of the University of La Verne’s science labs are getting long-awaited and much needed makeovers.
The physics and chemistry laboratories in Maineiro and Founders halls will undergo a $3.7 million renovation with expected completion by Spring 2020.
The project, intended to have been an 800 sq. ft. renovation, quadrupled, after the administration decided to improve both the physics and chemistry departments at the same time, said Jason Miller, associate vice president for facilities, development and capital planning.
Professor of Biology and Biochemistry Jay Jones said some of the problems the labs had experienced previously included poor ventilation, temperatures that ran between very hot and cold, poor plumbing, and misplaced electrical equipment.
“There were some concerns with safety,” Miller said.
Miller added that the old labs were not a conducive environment to for serious laboratory work.
Faculty working in the building agree.
“In 2010 we doubled the number of students that we serve in the natural sciences but we didn’t double the amount of space we had,” said Christine Broussard, professor of biology and chair of the natural sciences division.
“Renovations were necessary so that we could increase the number of students but do so safely,” Broussard added.
The physics department is getting a substantial expansion, along with the lab makeover, Miller said.
“Founders Hall will become safer with a fire corridor on the first level (and) improvements to the restroom facilities on the first floor of Maineiro Hall,” Miller said.
Some of the renovations could be complete as early as January, in advance of the spring 2020 semester.
“There are definite benefits to having students working in labs because it enhances their learning and success,” Broussard said.
Liliana Castaneda can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.