NOVA Woodbridge Campus Opens Largest Academic Building in 23 Years
– September 13, 2013 1:52 pm
WOODBRIDGE,Va. – As sunlight from the large windows pour into his classroom in the newest building on campus, Zack Jackson teaches students how to draw.
The 20 students in his class at Northern Virginia Community College’s (NOVA) Woodbridge Campus are working on a visual study where, from behind easels, they draw objects and shapes that sit on a table in the middle of the floor.
It’s a large classroom with wide open space and plenty of room room to learn.
“A room like this is perfect for what we are doing, and drawing,” said Jackson. “I teach another lecture class, but I like this because I’m able to have this kind of space, and it helps me teach the students how express themselves through their art.”
The art classroom is one of several new areas in the new Woodbridge Arts and Sciences Building on campus — affectionately known by students and staff as “Phase III.” College officials officially opened the new 84,000 square foot building on Thursday.
Inside are seven computer classrooms, a theater, 60-seat lecture hall, art gallery and two studios, a graphics design studio, three science labs, photography classrooms, offices, food service and dining areas, study halls and, if that weren’t enough, it will serve as the new home of the campus’ library. It’s the first major addition to the campus since the adjacent Phase II, now known as the Seefeldt Building after long-serving Prince William Board of Supervisors Chairman Kathleen Seefeldt — opened its doors in 1990.
“It has been 23 years since the Woodbridge Campus added a major, comprehensive academic building. During that time enrollment has grown to over 11,000 students,” said NOVA Woodbridge Provost Dr. Sam Hill. “Do you see a pattern? An academic building is added each time the Woodbridge Campus enrollment doubles.”
By 2028, the campus that now houses 11,000 students is expected to grow by an 20,000. A total of four new buildings will be needed to accommodate the campus’ growth.
Recent smaller additions to the campus over the past 10 years also include an bookstore and a heating and air conditioning training center. Officials will seek LEED Certification for the new Arts and Sciences building as it is complete with two green roof, a cistern to collect rain water, and a geothermal heating and cooling system — a first for NOVA, Virginia’s largest institution of higher learning.
The building opened one year later than originally planned due to permit approvals at the state level, said Hill.
Also on Thursday, college officials broke ground for a new Workforce Development Center that will also sit on the Woodbridge Campus. With 50,000 square feet of space, training rooms, testing facilities, and event space, it will be NOVA’s only center dedicated to working with area businesses to develop skilled workers in computer science and technology.
“When you consider what’s happening at Marine Corps Base Quantico and Fort Belvoir, as well the information assurance network security needs in the business and healthcare arenas, it is clear what cyber security should be one of the focal areas in the workforce development areas.” said Hill.
Construction on the workforce center will begin in November and is expected to be complete in Fall 2o15.
The newly opened arts and sciences building connects with the Seefeldt Building and is the next phase of a larger expansion plan for the campus. Hill is working with local and state leaders to find $400,000 for a still unfunded study to examine the possibility of adding a community sports, recreation, and aquatics center to the campus.