OU Breaks Ground on $74.6 Million Engineering Center
Enrollment in engineering and computer science has been on the rise at the university.
Responding to an increase in enrollment in its engineering and computer science program, Oakland University leaders on Wednesday broke ground on a new engineering center that will open in 2014.
The 127,000-square-foot facility on the south side of campus will include classroom and research space; it is a $74.6 million project.
"We are here today to celebrate an investment in growth," said OU President Gary Russi, speaking to a crowd of students, faculty and university leaders in a tent on the site of the future building.
The school of engineering and computer science saw a 20 percent jump in undergraduate enrollment and an 18 percent jump in graduate enrollment this fall, according to university officials.
"Oakland University takes a back seat to nobody in this state in terms of having a forward-looking vision," said Louay Chamra, dean of the school.
The school will feature 37 modular laboratories, many of which will be able to be viewed through public corridors to "encourage curiosity," said Susan Awbrey, OU's interim provost. It will also feature a rooftop project to encourage student research in green technologies.
The ground-breaking follows the opening this fall of the university's Human Health Building.