MCCANDLESS (KDKA) — It took a little more than seven months for the renovations to be completed at the Palumbo Science Center at La Roche University in McCandless.

“Investing in the facilities that will prepare students for the kinds of jobs and the kinds of future they will do to have an impact on our communities is critical,” said Sr. Candace Introcaso, the president of La Roche University.

WATCH: Ribbon-Cutting Ceremony —

 

The second-floor space includes labs, classrooms and faculty offices, at a cost of $6.5 million.

“You see these holes on the top of the ceiling. That’s a very sophisticated system that pushes air into this room, so that it maximizes the suction that is being pulled out of these fumes, into the atmosphere,” Dr. Howard Ishiyama, the university’s provost, said.

La Roche celebrated the completion of the remodel with a ceremonial ribbon cutting and reception Friday morning.

(Photo Credit: KDKA)

“Just to see the transformation from what it was to what it is now, I’m actually excited. Classes start Monday. I’m like, let’s start, I’m ready,” said Kayla Ordos, a senior forensic chemistry major.

The La Roche faculty played a big part in the renovation, so they could best serve their students.

In the organic chemistry lab, there’s even a shower in case it’s needed during an experiment.

Leaders at La Roche say the renovation of the Science Center shows the university’s dedication to its students and their science education.

They say the Division of Natural and Behavioral Sciences is the fastest growing academic division at the University; undergraduate enrollment in STEM majors has increased by 70 percent over the past 10 years.

Lisa Washington