Chaminade High School is expanding its footprint with a 34,000-square-foot facility dedicated to science, research and technology set to open early next year.
Assistant principal of academics Robert Paul said the school’s 1,700 students will have access to the Science, Technology and Research Center, currently under construction at Emory Road and Jericho Turnpike.
Chaminade launched a $20 million fundraising campaign for the construction as well as the new technology, including an Anatomage digital anatomy table, 3D scanners and printers, computerized lab probes, a Foucault pendulum and hydrodynamics simulator.
The $23 million building will also be topped with an observatory dome.
Chaminade senior J.T. Carlstrom of Rockville Centre said he is considering a career in physical therapy and is excited for the younger students to have access to the digital anatomy table.
“It’s going to give you an up-close view of the anatomy of the human body, which we don’t get right now,” Carlstrom said. “We dissect frogs, but this will be a lot more realistic.”
Paul, who also teaches science at Chaminade and is an alumnus of the Class of 1992, called the new facility a “landmark academic achievement” since he joined the faculty almost 20 years ago.
“Not only is it an advancement in the physical facilities, it’s also coupled with advancements in our academic curriculum. The building provides us an area for our students and our faulty to grow, but I think it also allows us to take what our current curriculum is and advance it along with that. As the building grows and takes shape, so does our curriculum with it.”
The building which overlooks the school’s new football stadium and field will house the school’s seven science labs for biology, chemistry, physics, geosciences, fabrication and robotics as well as a dedicated space for the school’s Science Olympiad team.
In the future, Paul said, the building will also be used for other subjects in the additional creative spaces, such as an English or social studies class.
The additional space will also allow Chaminade to expand on its existing curriculum, including robotics and engineering, Paul said.
“Engineering has become a popular major of our students, and they’ll be able to get hands-on experience as freshman and grow with that,” Paul said.
Director of communications Matt Markham said the facility will be the first of its kind for high school students in the tri-state area and was originally envisioned because of the 25 percent uptick in jobs from science, technology, engineering and math fields between 2005 and 2015.
“In my four years here, we’ve put up a new football stadium, a new turf field, every classroom has Apple TVs, every student has an iPad, and now we’re building a science center,” Carlstrom said. “I wouldn’t be surprised if I come back in three years and the whole school is completely new. It is incredible to see how much the school has grown in the last four years.”