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Mercy College of Ohio is embarking on a three-year, $3 million construction project today that will result in high-tech laboratory spaces for its students.
With enrollment of about 1,100 students on its Toledo campus, located near downtown on Madison Avenue, the college awards degrees in various medical fields but is well-known for its nursing program.
“We inherited the old Mercy Hospital laboratory when the hospital closed in 1996. During those 15 years, our student population has grown tenfold, and we have been making do with an antiquated lab,” said Shelly McCoy Grissom, associate dean of operations.
“We restructured the lab the best that we could, but the space allocation provides challenges to professors trying to teach and watch students as they work on experiments,” said Barbara Stoos, associate dean of science and mathematics.
Phase one of the reconstruction project that begins today is expected to be completed by May. It involves converting a theater-style classroom in the academic center into a new lab that will have 18 work stations for students.
“We will be on the third floor of the academic center with jack hammers to get rid of the steps and make a nice, open space,” Ms. McCoy Grissom said.
The new labs were designed by Toledo-based architectural firm SSOE Group and will have natural light and a more open feel. Each lab will be equipped with large, interactive whiteboards that project images from a computer screen. The labs will have other high-tech tools such as computer tablets and laptops. Students also will have their own surface area to conduct experiments.
“It will be very modern,” Ms. McCoy Grissom said. “The students are thrilled. They are definitely looking forward to having up-to-date equipment and new facilities.”
When all three phases of the project are complete in 2015, the college will have five new separate laboratory classrooms. School officials plan to use the labs for a wide variety of courses including chemistry, anatomy and physiology, microbiology, physics, biology, and general sciences.
“It’s up to us to provide the very best academic experience possible for our students and our future in providing health-care workers for our community. I am truly excited to be part of this new project,” Ms. Stoos said.
Mercy College is a Catholic undergraduate institution that is sponsored by Mercy, formerly Mercy Health Partners.
Contact Marlene Harris-Taylor at mtaylor@theblade or 419-724-6091.