New laboratories, renovated offices and corridors, and a slew of
cosmetic improvements are all on the agenda for this summer in St.
Albert Hall, home to St. John’s acclaimed science programs.
Most of the building upgrades will take place on the third,
second and basement levels of the science building. Two new
laboratories will be added in the sub-basement and two offices will
be created for the new faculty members who will be using those
labs. Corridors will get a facelift and cosmetic changes will be
made throughout the building. All upgrades will be completed when
students return from their summer break.
This year’s renovations and upgrades in St. Albert Hall are all
components of a larger, multi-year Science Master Plan that was
launched in 2006, and was conceived and implemented to upgrade and
completely modernize the University’s science building. During the
past year, the science facilities were utilized by nearly 3000
students enrolled in science degree programs and their professors
as well as by many more students who take a laboratory science
course as part of their core requirements.
By the end of 2008, the Science Master Plan will be successfully
Upgraded Security System
Concurrently, an upgraded ID-card swiping system and additional
security cameras are being installed at various sites around St.
Boosting the security system in the science building is
necessary, explains Executive Director of Public Safety Denise
Vencak, in order to allow for around-the-clock access to
laboratories that students and faculty in both the College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences and St. John’s College of
Arts and Sciences have indicated they want and need.
Consequently, Vencak advises, three exterior doors are being
designated as after-hour entrances to the science building and 60
ID card readers are now being installed to permit or deny entrance
to student and faculty research labs. Additionally, 18 internal and
external security cameras are being added to the surveillance
system. Wiring for the security system is about 75 percent
complete, she says, and all security work is expected to be
completed before the new semester commences in August.
Vencak indicates that “this [card swiping and security cameras]
is the wave of the future. A lot of colleges and universities are
doing it. At St. John’s, the safety of our students is our highest
priority and this technology helps us to protect them.”