Two new buildings designed to increase offerings for aerospace engineering, electrical engineering and computer science are under construction and will be open for classes at the start of the spring semester in 2024.
Dean of Engineering and Applied Science Don Rabern said that one of the two buildings will be the “labs” building, featuring the computer labs and classrooms necessary for instruction.
The other building will be the “shops” building, which will have equipment for prototyping and hands-on learning, including things like water jet cutters, CNC mills and lathes.
Rabern is excited about the various opportunities that will open up for students as a result of the new facilities. He explained that Colorado Springs has over 300 companies focused on cybersecurity and aerospace, representing a local desire and need for professionals in the field.
“What we find when we partner with industry is the number of internships available, and the number of job openings available and the number of people at career fairs that come expand significantly,” Rabern said.
The construction costs about $25,000, and the project as a whole costs about $23 million. Rabern estimates that nearly 80% of the funding for these buildings comes from generous donations.
The school did not recieve money from the state for this project, but got some money from the CU system through the President’s Initiative. According to their website, this initiative provides funding for place-based projects and encourages high quality urban research at CU Denver.
Rabern said that the school also recieved some money from larger organizations. The largest contributor to the funding of the new buildings came from the Anschutz Foundation, a charity-focused foundation that donates to nonprofit organizations across Colorado.
Rabern explained that he thinks the new buildings have provided a great opportunity to expand on what the College of Engineering and Applied Science has to offer.
“If we’re going to support the regional economy and industry and student choices, we need to grow the program, so this is one of the ways that we’re doing that,” Rabern said.