The Connect NC bond will fund the $50 million construction of the Winston-Salem State University’s new Sciences Building. Slated to have more than 100,000 square feet of teaching and research space, the building will feature laboratory and learning spaces for multiple academic programs across the sciences, including biology, chemistry, physics, and health sciences. The building will anchor the Science District of the Winston-Salem State University campus and will serve as a hub for innovation and collaboration.
In addition, the building will house the university’s biomedical research infrastructure center, bringing all science laboratories within close proximity to significantly increase faculty and student collaboration.
If the bond passes, the project is estimated to take a little over two years to complete.
Why is this particular project important to Winston-Salem State?
“The Sciences Building at Winston-Salem State University is a crucial project that supports the university’s commitment to meeting the region’s demand for more STEM-H (science, technology, engineering, mathematics, and health sciences) graduates.
As an historically black university, Winston-Salem State University is also poised to fill the need for greater diversity among scientists and health care providers.
The university’s current science facilities do not provide the flexible collaboration spaces that are essential to facilitating interdisciplinary learning – critical to educating future scientist and health care leaders in the 21st century. Further, the university’s biomedical research laboratory is currently housed off campus – limiting the ability for students in science and health sciences programs to easily engage in important biomedical research.”
How does the selected project help meet WSSU’s stated educational goals?
“Winston-Salem State University is committed to providing under-served populations with access to high-quality programs that prepare them to be critical thinkers, analytical problem solvers, effective communicators, and innovative and creative collaborators. By providing cutting-edge learning spaces and laboratories for our students, we help prepare them for the rigors of the “real world” application of science and research.”
What impact will completion of the project have beyond the campus?
“This project represents a significant investment in STEM-H education for under-served and minority students. Investment in our STEM-H infrastructure will have a lasting impact on the state’s ability to attract and retain companies offering high-paying jobs.
Further, this building responds to a national need for greater diversity among STEM-H professionals. Diversity is critical to excellence in STEM-H fields. Women and minority populations continue to be under-represented, so it will become increasingly difficult to provide an adequate scientific workforce. State-of-the-art science facilities will help make STEM-H fields more appealing to students as they choose majors while also ensuring they receive the education they need to be successful in the workforce.”