Texas A&M is in the midst of a building boom. Two weeks ago, the university broke ground on two new physics buildings, and a life sciences building, the largest single construction project in the school's history. And this is only the beginning.
Breaking ground has been the trend at Texas A&M
A $300 million construction project is underway at the university that includes three new buildings.
"We're in the process right now of starting over the next few months almost a quarter of a billion dollars in new building projects," Texas A&M Vice President of Research Richard Ewing said.
Less than two weeks ago officials broke ground on a $95 million life sciences building, the largest single construction project in the school's history.
"One of the things that were doing is trying to take advantage of doing lots of types of research across campus to build a non-traditional discipline and work in emerging technologies," Ewing said.
In the same week, ground was broken on two joined physics and astronomy buildings worth $57 million. Other projects in the works are an expansion of the Comparative Medicine Program, a new Nuclear Magnetic Imaging facility and a new wing for the Veterinary Research Tower.
"It really can benefit the school, bring in more people and more opportunities for other people to do research too," Texas A&M student Roberto Tovar said.
Along with the multi-million dollar construction project, the university plans to add nearly 450 faculty members to improve the faculty-student ratio. All but a hundred have already been hired.
"I think that it would help maybe bring in new people and kind of give them a new perspective on this school," Texas A&M Student Ashley Gildersleeve said.
The funding for the construction boom is coming from re-investments, money stored in the permanent university fund, and large donations.
Aggie alum George P. Mitchell donated $35 million in support of the university's physics initiatives.
"We've thought through this very carefully," Ewing said. "We also have to find equipment for all of these buildings and we have plans for funding that, so I think we're in good shape."
The life sciences building should be completed by the summer of 2008, forever changing the landscape of Aggieland.
Upload your photo, with a caption of your reason to smile, then watch the last half hour of BVTM from 6:30A - 7A Monday mornings to see if your photo makes it.