The remodel and construction of several buildings at the Department of Animal and Food Science's Ag Science Center were recently completed in an effort to serve the department's needs as it continues to grow and develop.
"As the learning experiences in the Animal Science programs have become more science based, the need for improved physical facilities was also realized. After much planning and designing, almost everything was redone," said Zeph Quirl, Animal and Food Science Department chair.
The Ag Science Center, located about six miles west of campus, was converted from an old dairy farm when the Animal Science program first began. These buildings were used until they became too old to meet the needs of the students and had to be revamped.
"We basically scraped the site clean with the exception of the current arena and class and office building that are out there," said Wayne Clark, University Operations managing director. "Everything else had to be taken down and built brand new."
The new facilities include: a feed mill, commodity bins, equipment storage for handling and repair, feed machinery, hay sheds, corrals and feeders, a quarantine facility, animal handling with an animal hospital, a reproduction lab, and heifer, sheep, poultry, and swine
This completes the first phase of renovation, with the main building as the next focus, which will be remodeled in the coming months. The new facilities will help students in a myriad of ways as they will be able to have more first-hand experience with the animals they are studying.
"It helps with the visual aspect, the hands-on, and the practical application for the students." Quirl said. "The live animal facilities that we have are a huge help. So many people are more hands-on learners, so to be able to take something we learn from a book, then to go out and apply it makes a huge difference.