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Outside view of Achatz at sunrise.

Achatz Hall of Science and Research Center

USF will create a modern science laboratory center offering new specialized and redesigned science laboratories, dedicated research space plus preparation and storage areas—all designed to meet the university’s rapidly expanding science needs.

Project Components:

  • New and updated biotechnology, chemistry, genetics, microbiology and
    physics laboratories
  • Dedicated research space for students (both undergraduate and graduate) and faculty use
  • Shared and dedicated preparatory areas
  • Contemporary storage areas for specimens and supplies
  • Efficient energy and green-building design concepts
  • Student study spaces

With upgraded and expanded resources, more USF students will have the opportunity to conduct innovative research projects on university grounds. This will make USF student research results more efficient and consistent.

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Students study in Achatz

Why is the university pursuing a science addition?

As 21st century science evolves, the need for laboratories evolves as well. USF facilities were designed to educate students to work in 1960’s-era medical fields. The university now offers programs, including environmental science, forensic chemistry, pre-pharmaceutical chemistry, and computer science, that were not foreseen when Achatz Hall of Science was new. Technology has significantly changed the fields of science and healthcare, requiring new classroom design and project-based learning.

More than half of the university’s undergraduate students study in the sciences and healthcare. Including general education courses, over 2,300 students use the science laboratories each year. They need intentional collaborative spaces that facilitate modern interactive experiments, as well as deeper conversations between students and faculty. The addition and renovation creates more than new laboratories and modern student spaces, it provides a commitment to integrating Faith and Reason.

In keeping with the call of Pope Francis in Laudato Si for all people to respect and care for creation, the building will incorporate sustainability features into its design.

Students walking in lobby of the new Achatz building

The Case for Expansion

Learning in a cutting-edge environment will only increase the success of USF students. University-level programs require adaptable educational facilities that will keep pace with innovation and advancements in scientific methodology. Creating modern laboratories and additional classrooms is essential.

The new Achatz Hall of Science and Research Center will enable USF to expand opportunities for laboratory research and further support field study projects. This increased capacity leverages the university’s science and medical programs, and our recently introduced computer and forensic programs. More courses and advanced science and medical degrees—like the university’s new doctorate in nursing practice—will also be possible. Students will have the work and collaborative spaces they need for short- and long-term research, and informal gathering areas to help build a community of future scientific leaders. With respect for creation in mind, the new facilities elevate the university’s commitment to sustainable design and “green” energy conservation.