New labs opening in fall.

Construction is underway to renovate labs and classroom space inside the Hall of Sciences. Photos by Lynne DeLade
Construction is underway to renovate labs and classroom space inside the Hall of Sciences. Photos by Lynne DeLade

When science classes begin this fall, students will be able to participate in more laboratory courses, enjoy state-of-the-art classroom technology and have additional space for group projects.

The Hall of Sciences is in the midst of an extensive renovation that will create a completely remodeled psychology wing, two renovated environmental science teaching labs and a new cutting-edge chemistry research lab that will be shared with RISE, the Research Institute for Scientists Emeriti program. Additional building renovations to the Hall of Sciences continue throughout the school year.

The infrastructure of the building is also undergoing a major upgrade. There will be improved central air conditioning and heat, energy-efficient lighting and new fire protection equipment, including sprinklers.

A worker assists in installing the flooring in the bathrooms in the psychology wing.

“It’s going to be much more modern,” says Sara Webb, professor of biology and environmental studies. “It’s a big transformation.”

The current work constitutes the first phase of the university’s long-term, multi-million dollar overhaul of the Hall of Sciences. These projects, together with the addition of a research annex, are being paid for by a $6.8 million state grant awarded to Drew last year. The university is also actively raising funds from private sources for future improvements to the building, and has already secured roughly $7.5 million.

Some of the features students will find this fall include:

  • Observation rooms for psychology experiments involving human subjects
  • Psychology faculty research labs where honors students and others can participate in independent research
  • A larger chemistry lab allowing RISE fellows and students to conduct research together
  • Two renovated labs for biology and environmental science and sustainability use, including additional anatomy and physiology classes

“The sciences have always been one of Drew’s great strengths,” says President Vivian A. Bull. “This project represents a much-needed investment in undergraduate and faculty research, particularly in areas that are in high demand by students.”—Elizabeth Moore