to break ground
On $17 million Science Center
State-of-the-art facility will enhance
college's strong national reputation
NORTH MANCHESTER, Ind. (Oct. 25, 2003) - On Nov. 14,
Manchester College will break ground on a $17 million Science Center
designed to extend the independent college's rich heritage of scientist
training and ensure all of its graduates have contemporary knowledge of the
The Science Center - more than 10 years in planning and
fund development - will not carry debt: The college will pay cash from the
generous support of alumni, friends, faculty, staff and the Lilly Endowment
Inc. General contractor is R.L. Turner Corp., of Indianapolis, which will
begin immediately to clear ground, but will await spring for major
construction, said CEO Greg Turner. As much as 85 percent of the contractors
will come from northeast Indiana, with up to 60 trades workers on site at
the peak of construction, he said.
"But the social and economical opportunity created throughout Wabash
and surrounding counties by the new Science Building will continue long
after the construction is complete," Turner said.
The Science Center will rise adjacent to the Funderburg
Library on the academic mall, its red brick and buff-colored limestone
exterior in harmony with other buildings on the 120-acre campus. At more
than 85,600 square feet, it will be the largest structure in the history of
the college and home to biology, chemistry, physics, environmental science,
math and computer science studies.
The new structure will be ready for students in July
2005, replacing the Holl-Kintner Hall of Science, which 44 years ago was
state-of-the-art. Science learning now demands a more interactive,
research-rich format of student that fosters interaction among students and
faculty, said retired chemistry Professor James T. Streator, faculty liaison
and building shepherd for the project. Research-focused hands-on study
already is the bedrock of science teaching and learning at the 1,170-student
Manchester College, he noted.
The new Science Center will
directly meet three essential goals:
- provide a contemporary facility
for the sciences
- complete an instructional
transformation in the sciences at Manchester College by enabling faculty
and students to engage in innovative approaches to teaching and learning
- enhance the recruitment and
retention of students and faculty in the sciences.
"With today's demands for
educational facilities that can prepare tomorrow's scientists, there is no
question that this facility will allow Manchester College to continue its
leadership position as a college that provides a first-class undergraduate
education for pre-med, math, chemistry and biology," said Board Chair David
A. Haist of Fort Wayne, Ind., executive vice president and chief operating
officer of Do it Best Corp.
Manchester College has
received century-long national recognition for excellence in the natural
sciences, enriched by several generations of distinguished faculty. Its
graduates include Dr. Roy J. Plunkett, who invented Teflon; Dr. Paul J.
Flory, who won the Nobel Prize for his work in polymers; and Dr. Gene E.
Likens, who defined the problem of acid rain in North America.
More than 85 percent of
Manchester students who apply for medical school are accepted. Every day,
more than 300 physicians and medical specialists who received their
undergraduate training at Manchester make a difference in patients across
the nation and overseas. Currently, about 120 Manchester College students
are majoring in the sciences. More than 1,100 current students must
take science classes to graduate.
"We are truly excited about our new Science Center,"
said Manchester College President Parker G. Marden. "Our students wear
shirts that say 'At Manchester, science is a verb' Now they have the
facility they deserve. It will go nicely with a terrific faculty, nearly all
with Ph.D.s from top schools, excellent students and a culture in which they
all "do science!"
"The new science center will give our students amazing
opportunities for learning and research," said Jo Young Switzer, dean and
vice president for academic affairs. "Faculty helped design the building,
down to small details, so the Science Center was designed by the people who
know best how to use it to benefit the students."
In addition to classrooms
and laboratories, the new Science Center will include a 130-seat Flory
Auditorium with the most sophisticated, high-tech teaching and learning
facility on campus. A three-story lobby will serve as a dramatic student
commons and highly visible main entrance to the facility. The architect,
InterDesign of Indianapolis, won the 2003 International Masonry Institute
award for its design of the 16.5 million Huntington College Science Center.
The Board of Trustees
chose not to touch Manchester's endowment or take on debt for the Science
Center, waiting until all funding is secured before beginning construction.
"Our donors have so completely and fully supported this project and we are
so thankful for their commitment to the college and this project," said
Haist. "As we move forward, we intend to celebrate their sacrifices and we
are certain our students will be the real beneficiaries of this great new
"We are also so thankful
for the great leadership William Harper, national chair of the campaign, and
President Parker G. Marden have provided. Without their hard work and
focused leadership, we would not be able to move forward at this time on
Faculty current and
emeriti were intimately involved in the planning and funding for the Science
Center, as were alumni and trustees.
"It's wonderful that alumni, friends of the college and
other institutions have been able to work together to make this dream of a
state-of-the-art Science Center possible," said Trustee William N. Harper of
Scottsdale, Ariz. Harper has chaired The Next Step! campaign steering
committee to raise $52 million by December 2006 for the Science Center, a
new College Union, recital hall and the Manchester Fund.
"It is inspiring to call to mind the many devoted
friends and alumni who believe deeply in the mission of Manchester
College," said Timothy A. McElwee, former vice president for advancement who
led administration of the campaign. "Their dedicated support will make it
possible for Manchester to continue to serve the common good through our
excellent program in the natural sciences. Our donors have given very
generously - some sacrificially - to ensure that the dream of this essential
new science facility will become a reality. It is a great joy to applaud
their commitment, as we celebrate this dream fulfilled."
General contractor R.L.
Turner Corp. received the 2002 Award of Excellence from Associated Builders
& Contractors for its work on the $8.5 million Landrum Center for
Interdisciplinary Studies and Social Sciences at Earlham College. R.L.
Turner Corp.'s educational projects include the Dietz Center at Franklin
College, Westfield High School, elementary schools and the Brown County
"The design team's
priorities and goals included enhancing student-student, faculty-student
interaction and providing space for 'unstructured learning,' said architect
Andrew Costlow of InterDesign. "We wanted to minimize separation between
science departments, and create a science community and enhance
interdisciplinary interaction of non-science students as well."
The architectural plan for the Manchester College Science Center is composed
of these components:
the north and east will serve as high-tech teaching and
research laboratory space
the center will accommodate laboratory support areas and
the south will house shared lecture rooms and general-purpose
a three-story lobby will serve as a dramatic student commons
area, as well as a highly visible entrance to the facility
Holl-Kintner will not be discarded; its classrooms and
offices will be used by other academic disciplines.
Manchester College, in North Manchester, Ind., offers more than 45 areas
of study to 1,170 students from 29 states and 33 countries. For more
information about Manchester College, visit the web site at