THE University of Aberdeen’s new £35 million Science Teaching Hub has been officially opened by renowned scientist and broadcaster Professor Chris Jackson.
Professor Jackson met with local secondary school pupils who also enjoyed a tour of the building which promises to revolutionise the way science is taught at the 527-year-old institution.
The 73,194 sq ft facility provides teaching and laboratory space over three floors and a central atrium which has been designed to inspire collaboration between the chemistry, medical sciences, biological sciences and geosciences students who will study there.
The building has been shortlisted for the Education Building or Project of the year in the 2022 Scottish Design Awards.
Around 90 secondary school pupils and Professor Jackson were treated to practical demonstrations by lecturers from each of the disciplines as part of the opening event.
Professor Jackson said: “The application of science to solve some of the most pressing global challenges has never been more vital, as we seek to reduce poverty, grow economies, and protect natural systems. To this end, it has been an honour to open the University of Aberdeen Science Teaching Hub, a unique, inspiring facility that will allow the next generation of scientists, perhaps including some of the local school children I have met today, to be trained in numerous, socially important STEM subjects.”
Professor George Boyne, Principal & Vice-Chancellor of the University of Aberdeen, said: “Our new Science Teaching Hub represents the University of Aberdeen’s commitment to attracting and nurturing the next generation of scientists who will go on to tackle the biggest challenges of our time – from climate change and the energy transition to food security and beyond.
“As well as boasting cutting-edge facilities, the design of the Science Teaching Hub is designed to be flexible and adaptable – creating a space that will encourage natural interdisciplinary collaboration between students.”
“We’re grateful to our special guest, Professor Chris Jackson for being here for today’s official opening and delivering some inspiring words to the local secondary pupils who attended. Hopefully it’s inspired some of them to pursue a career in science.”
Professor Graeme Paton, Head of the School of Biological Sciences and Project Director, added: “It’s been an honour to direct this project. It’s not just a celebration of the building but also of the staff and students that underpin our ambitions.
“My time as a student was inspired by the techniques I learned in lab classes and even today they drive me as a scientist and as a commercial researcher. Those classes gave me confidence and motivation.”
“I want this centre and the support we have built around it to be the stimulus for the next generation of patents, commercial and academic researchers and a confidence enhancing experience for our students.”