Special to 1812Blockhouse

The Ohio State University at Mansfield will soon boast its first organic chemistry teaching and learning laboratory. The lab and associated support spaces will enable expanded course offerings and the ability to complete additional four-year bachelor’s degrees entirely on the Mansfield campus.

The multi-year, multi-phase project began in the summer of 2018. Phase one focused on the existing structures in the 40-year-old Conard Hall. Construction included upgrades to heating, ventilation and air conditioning, as well as updated code compliant services to two current chemistry and microbiology labs utilized by approximately 1,000 Ohio State Mansfield and North Central State College students annually.

Phase two, which is nearing completion, is concentrated on interior renovations and the modernization of 7,500 square feet of existing general classroom space to create Ohio State Mansfield’s first organic chemistry lab.

“This project will provide the safe and modern labs required for our current, and growing, STEM-related curriculum and research,” said Dr. Dawn Kitchen, Ohio State Mansfield associate dean. “Organic chemistry is required by many majors at Ohio State, and having this new lab space will allow us to offer students a more diverse range of pathways to degrees such as biology, nursing and health sciences.”

With plans to open for the 2021 spring semester, the new lab will accommodate 12 students for organic and 24 students for inorganic chemistry instruction. Phase two construction has included state of the art laboratory systems and equipment, casework and benches, code compliant storage, new fume hoods, electrical upgrades and improved access and observation.

“The updates we are making to Conard Hall strengthens our learning environments and advances our shared-campus efficiencies and strategic collaboration with North Central State College,” said Brian White, Ohio State Mansfield program analyst and project manager. “Additional phases envisioned for the future include new faculty and undergraduate research labs and adaptable lab spaces for environmental and natural resources courses.”

Photos: OSUMansfield,Image by MARIO OLAYA from Pixabay

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