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Press Release: Gov. Nixon tours Schrenk Hall at Missouri S&T, identified as college’s highest priority for renovation

  

Contact:           Scott Holste, (573) 751-0290

Scott.Holste@mo.gov

Channing Ansley, (573) 751-0290

Channing.Ansley@mo.gov

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Dec. 4, 2014

Gov. Nixon tours Schrenk Hall at Missouri S&T, identified as college’s highest priority for renovation

Strategic bond issuance will include $12 million renovation project for 76-year-old building that houses teaching and research labs for chemistry and biology

ROLLA, Mo. – During a visit today to Missouri University of Science and Technology, Gov. Jay Nixon said he is committed to working together with legislators during the upcoming legislative session to complete a strategic, fiscally responsible bond issuance that will make long-overdue investments in higher education in Missouri.

The Governor was at Missouri S&T to tour Schrenk Hall, which provides classrooms, department offices, and teaching and research laboratories for chemistry and biological sciences. Gov. Nixon was joined on the tour by Missouri S&T Chancellor Dr. Cheryl Schrader.

Schrenk Hall was originally constructed in 1938, with the west wing added in 1973. In addition to those students majoring in chemistry and biological sciences, the building serves as a classroom setting for between 2,000 to 3,000 other Missouri S&T students annually. Because much of the infrastructure in Schrenk Hall needs updating in order to maintain state-of-the-art teaching and research facilities, university officials have identified its renovation as a top priority through $12 million in bonding through the state.

“Over the past six years, we’ve worked together in a bi-partisan way to balance the budget and protect our spotless – and enviable – AAA credit rating,” Gov. Nixon said. “With our AAA credit rating intact and our economy moving forward, now is the time to act on these long-deferred improvements – and to do so in a strategic and fiscally responsible way that will benefit our students and our economy. I thank members of the General Assembly for taking the first step by authorizing additional bonding capacity last year, and look forward to working with legislators in the upcoming session to get these much-needed projects underway.”

Last year, the Missouri General Assembly passed additional bonding capacity, authorizing up to $200 million in projects at community colleges and four-year institutions around the state.  Both two- and four-year higher education institutions have now submitted project lists for this funding, placing priority upon those projects that address the most critical needs of their institution. Many of the projects identified by colleges and universities will improve facilities in the areas of science, math, engineering and technology, referred to as STEM fields.

“Because chemistry and biology courses serve such a core function at Missouri S&T, generations of students have taken classes and engaged in research at Schrenk Hall,” Dr. Schrader said. “To help maintain the high standard of academic excellence expected and delivered at our university, we need to ensure that our classrooms and labs are state of the art. The investment in Schrenk Hall will provide greater learning and research opportunities for students and faculty, and we greatly appreciate the Governor and legislators supporting the bonding and capital improvement bills for this capital project.”

The project at Missouri S&T would renovate 83,000 square feet in Schrenk Hall, including refurbishment of teaching and research laboratories. By renovating the facilities at Schrenk, the university also would be able to consolidate teaching and research functions that currently are spread out over multiple buildings on campus, including some buildings slated for demolition.

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