AVC to celebrate opening of Health and Sciences Building

Posted: September 17, 2012

Antelope Valley College officials will host a day of celebration to include demonstrations, tours and presentations as part of the grand opening of its $52 million Health and Sciences Building on Thursday, Sept. 27.

Community members are invited to attend the event, which begins at 9 a.m. with an opening ceremony featuring elected officials, followed by a reception, guided tours of labs and a demonstration in a virtual science lab/planetarium.

The event continues at 5:30 p.m. with a second reception, tours, demonstrations and two presentations:

  • “At the Leading Edge of Space,” 7 p.m., HS 105, a panel featuring some of the latest and most exciting innovators in aerospace: the nation’s first commercial astronaut Mike Melvill, Lt. Col. Tim Jorris, director of the Hypersonic Combined Test Force; John Kelly, program manager for the Flight Opportunities Program at NASA Dryden Flight Research Center; and Eddie Zavala, acting program manager for NASA’s Stratospheric Observatory for Infrared Astronomy (SOFIA). Valley Press columnist and teacher William Warford will serve as moderator.
  • “Politics in Nursing: Is it really necessary?” 6 p.m., HS 201, featuring nurse practitioner and hospital board member Berna Mayer discussing the necessity of nurses to be involved in the political arena. Nurses can receive two continuing education hours through the presentation.

“Local voters supported the bond measure that paid for nearly half the cost of this building. We really want people to see how these labs and classrooms are serving our students and the community,” said Steve Standerfer, director of public and governmental relations.

“It’s a facility that rivals four-year universities,” said college Superintendent/President Dr. Jackie L. Fisher Sr.

Fisher noted that the science labs in the facility replace 51-year-old buildings that were outdated and lacked structural integrity.

“Our faculty members are recognized for delivering excellent instruction. Now we have a 21st century facility that creates a learning environment that matches the level of our instruction,” Fisher said.

The 105,085-square-foot, two-story building is the largest on the Lancaster campus. The facility includes 46,194 square feet of lab space – more than double the prior square footage for health science and sciences labs on campus. The lab space provides 666 student work stations.

Other building features include an outdoor botany greenhouse, telescope observation deck, surgery demonstration lab and Subway restaurant.

As part of the celebration, the college will host two additional presentations earlier in the week. Both of those presentations feature continuing education hours for nurses. Those wanting continuing education credit must register at the event.

“Research in Simulation in Nursing Education,” 6 p.m., Sept. 25 in HS 103, will feature nurse Casey Scudmore, an AVC graduate, providing an overview of what research says about the use of simulation for teaching nursing.

Then, 6 p.m. Sept. 26 in HS 201, Jane Frye, Linda Lawson and Jeanne Rhynsburger will discuss “Challenges in Nursing Administration: Making a Difference for Patients.”

College officials were quick to point out that the cost of the event is being paid for through donations and auxiliary funding.

“We were fortunate to have Subway, Klassen Corporation and tBP Architecture step forward to help cover the costs for the event. At a time when community college budgets are being slashed, we didn’t want to take any money from our general fund for this event,” said Fisher.