New tech center is hub for innovation and collaboration

Paige Walther 

On September 1st, 2016 Johnson & Wales University will be cutting the ribbon on its newest state-of the-art academic building: The John J. Bowen Center for Science and Innovation. The new space will be home to the School of Engineering and Design as well as the biology program for the College of Arts and Sciences. This 42-million-dollar investment showcases the dedication of the university to the STEM industries. The STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) industries are the most rapidly increasing careers with the highest earning potential. Studies released by the US Department of Commerce have outlined the increase in STEM workforce demand. Johnson & Wales University is positioning itself to be the leading output in quality, advanced and industry ready graduates.

The Center for Science and Innovation is 71,000 square feet worth of classrooms, collaboration spaces, and science labs. Each entrance to the academic building is paired with landscaping, stone work and art-deco inspired seating arrangements. Inside, the concrete floors and brightly painted wall combinations are similar to those found in a Silicon Valley tech company.

The Chestnut Street entrance leads to a sleek array of high top tables guarding the newest addition to dining services; Red Mango. This smoothie-serving eatery will be open in early September and will have the option to purchase smoothies through the meal plan system. Students will be able to run over to the CSI in between classes and refresh with a frozen yogurt, fresh juice or even a parfait.

Down the hall from the Red Mango will be the creative corner that houses the Innovation Lab, Project Lab, Maker’s Space, Design Studio, Assembly Space and Gallery. The labs and maker’s space will serve as resources to students who wish to collaborate and prototype their projects. The addition of 3D printers, laser burners, vinyl cutters, and a variety of other machines are sure to spark creative designs and prototypes. The design studio across the hall is lined with the newest Apple machines ready to handle student needs with quick and powerful performance. Both digital and print student projects will be displayed in the gallery space next to the design studio. The assembly space will be able to hold a maximum 178 individuals and will provide students, staff and faculty a new meeting spot on campus.

The College of Arts and Sciences will debut the biology program with cutting-edge laboratories in biology, microbiology, physics, general chemistry, organic chemistry, physiology, and anatomy. The second and third floor will find a mix of labs and classrooms all stocked with the latest equipment.

This Center for Science and Innovation will be open to all Wildcats looking to study, relax and collaborate on incubating fresh ideas.


Ray Nuñez

Staff Writer