Western Nevada College took the wraps off its new science lab on Thursday.
The William N. Pennington Biophysical Science Laboratory is a chemistry and human cadaver laboratory in the Aspen Building at WNC funded by a $1.45 million grant from the William N. Pennington Foundation.
“It is remarkable to be standing here. A number of years ago we were talking about improving this space. First, we wanted to increase capacity for more students. Second, we wanted to increase accessibility. And, third, we wanted to increase functionality,” said Mark Ghan, WNC acting president. “We’ve exceeded those goals with this extraordinary space.”
The cadaver lab, for example, which doubled in size, now includes a bench and movable tray that can be used by students in wheelchairs.
“This is about people who want to learn,” said Dr. Steve Carman, WNC professor of biophysical sciences who teaches in the lab.
The renovation expanded capacity from 24 to 32 students and the chemistry lab is now equipped with video monitors.
Rob Hooper, executive director, Northern Nevada Development Authority, said after the ribbon cutting the lab will help develop the area’s healthcare workforce.
“I talk to the hospitals and they have just as much demand for skilled workers as do manufacturers and other businesses. This will speed up the process for nurses and other healthcare workers,” said Hooper. “And it really distinguishes WNC as a cut above.”