On Jan. 31, the new Science Center Complex marked its opening to students, staff and faculty. After a remote Wintersession and a week of online classes due to an increase of positive COVID-19 cases at the beginning of the Spring semester, in-person classes resumed, allowing students to attend classes in the new Science Center. As construction began in spring 2018, many students have been eagerly waiting to enter and see the new building.
New parts of the Science Center include the Research Innovation, Chao Foundation Innovation Hub and the renovated Faroll Focus, which is the center of the Complex that includes new study spaces, tables and chairs for students, along with the Leaky Beaker Cafe where they can purchase snacks and drinks. Students have been especially enjoying different study spaces, such as the cubicles on the fourth floor, desks by the Leaky Beaker and private white board rooms where people can collaborate.
Sophie Hwang ’25 expressed her appreciation of the new Science Center facilities.
“I really like the fact that more study areas opened up,” Hwang said. “Personally, I think the Science Center transformed into an environment that I prefer to study in [more] than before. There is a lot more natural lighting coming into the building, and the space feels a lot more open, especially the center of this building where we can see where everything is located. As a person who likes to study outside of the dorm room, I feel very motivated and comfortable completing my work and assignments here.”
Spacious classrooms and newly designed desks and chairs have also been added to the new Science Complex, including lab spaces as well. In addition to classrooms, every department has their designated hallways connected by bridges, providing a more convenient experience for students who need to meet their professors or find classes in a specific department.
Alicia Yeon Seung Lee ’24, who is currently taking a class in the new classrooms, found the new classrooms much different from the previous rooms she was used to.
“I am taking ES 125. [The class] takes place in the Science Center Hub 101 classroom, which is a new, big classroom that fits 100 people,” Lee said. “It is definitely a new experience for me in Wellesley to take a class in such a big classroom — I feel like people are going to want to take more science and math classes because most of them take place in the new classrooms in the Science Complex. I also like how every department has their own hallways, such as the Frost Center for the environment.”
Multiple entrances and the building’s increased proximity to other academic buildings have also added to students’ positive experiences. Carolina Estrella ’24 found it easier to move from one class to another because of the Science Center’s expansion.
“The new Science Center became closer to the observatory and the green house, which is very nice,” Estrella said. “I normally end my class in the observatory and have a class right away in the Science Center, and moving from class to class has become easier because there is an entrance that is right next to where the observatory is.”
Lee, in particular, enjoyed the convenience of the new entrances into the Science Center.
“The entrances located in multiple areas are very helpful when it comes to getting to your classes,” she said. “The entrances are all located on the same floor, so it is not confusing when you enter the building. If you get lost, there are maps on each floor that shows where you are so that you can locate yourself easily. Also, the center of the Science Center became an open space and environment, you rarely get lost since you can visually see each floor and where you are.”