If you've followed this blog for awhile, you might be aware of our effort to build a Science Community Center on our campus, paid for by a bond measure passed by the voters in our local community a few years ago. The bond passed just prior to the Great Recession, and in the disastrous years that followed, the construction projects on our campus provided some of the few construction jobs in our region. Still, campus politics threatened to fritter away the vision we had for a building that would house the physical and biological science laboratories as well as a planetarium, an observatory, and a museum. It would be a true science center, a place where the community could learn about the region's paleontology, biology, geology, and anthropology, along with astronomy, physics, and chemistry. I had trouble imagining that it could ever come to pass.
Up until today, I was too cynical to think that our vision for our community would ever be implemented. It was a profound experience to walk through this bare-bones structure and dream about the facility that we will have in a few months. Our community made an ambitious commitment to science education a few years ago. It's going to be fun living up to their expectations!