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Thursday, Sep 23, 2021

Mercer opens the doors to new opportunities with the Spearman C. Godsey Science Center

Students all over campus looked at their schedule to see a new building code for their classroom: GSC.

“I was trying to figure out for the longest what it was,” said Alexandria Williams, a senior pre-medical student.

Once she figured it out, Williams said she was excited to be in “the new building” for her class this semester.

Mercer plans to grow their reputation as a research university. Their most recent investment: the $44 million Spearman C. Godsey Science Center.

The four-story center opened to students on the first day of the semester, with 60 teaching and research labs, 46 offices and seven lecture rooms.

Since then, students can be found all throughout the building lounging, studying and just enjoying the new scene.

The center has outdoor seating spaces as well as an amphitheater. There are informal learning spaces on the first, third and fourth floors with tables, chairs, couches and charging stations. There are also orange dry erase boards and television screens located throughout the building.

The center will also include specialized teaching labs in soil and field biology, anatomy and physiology and infectious diseases.

There is space set aside for laser labs, a tissue culture site and a computational center. For science students and staff, this is a big deal because it offers more research opportunities that aren’t always offered in traditional undergraduate spaces.

Heather Bowman Cutway, chair of the biology department, said she is excited to make the new transition for her courses and the growth of the department.

“A big benefit is just physically having more space,” Bowman Cutway said. “We were very packed at Willet.”

Bowman Cutway said she teaches plant biology this semester, and she’s now able to bring in plants for her course and leave them there. The room is exclusive to her plant biology classes.

“If I wanted to start an experiment with my students, it can stay there instead of being broken down and put back up multiple times in a week,” Bowman Cutway said.

Bowman Cutway said they can now take on more experiments and more students in the research labs.

For students taking science courses, a majority of the classes will be in the new science center, where professors’ offices are located as well.

The hours for the center haven’t been set yet because Penfield College and the Student Instructors program will also be utilizing the space.

Bowman Cutway said she is especially excited about the natural light that the building receives because she can grow her plants in her office and her classrooms. She’s looking forward to finalizing everything and making the center a new home for the departments.


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