January 11, 2008

Governor’s budget includes funds for new
Sacramento State science facility

Sacramento State’s plans for a Space and Science Center, as well as its long-awaited Science II building, are one step closer to fruition according to the budget released by the Governor’s Office yesterday.

The budget identifies $4.8 million in California State University capital outlay funds to support design and planning for the Sacramento State Science II facility, including the campus’ planned Space and Science Center. The new multi-story, 135,000 square-foot Science II building will include classrooms, labs, and the departments of Biological Sciences, Mathematics and Statistics, and Chemistry, with a separate wing for the Space and Science Center. The campus already has received nearly $2 million in public and private funds for the Space and Science Center, including $1.5 million in federal funds secured by both U.S. Rep. Doris Matsui of Sacramento and by her late husband, Congressman Robert T. Matsui.

“This is an exciting opportunity for our campus and for the community,” said Sacramento State President Alexander Gonzalez. “Our students deserve the best classroom and laboratory experiences, and with our current facilities that has been an increasingly difficult challenge."

“Science II will allow students to work in state-of-the-art science labs using the latest equipment. It’s an important step toward our Destination 2010 goal to provide excellent academic programs. We are grateful to the Governor and the CSU for helping to make it happen.

“This is great news for Sacramento,” said Congresswoman Doris Matsui. “The new planetarium, and Space and Science center will help spark the interest of the next generation of students in the science, technology and math fields. An investment in these fields will help our country stay competitive in the global economy.”

Though recently they have been thought of as separate facilities, pairing Science II and the Space Science Center allowed a “best of both worlds” solution. In November, the Board of Trustees for the California State University system voted to approve the use of the Public Higher Education Act funds for the combined facility. The action moved Science II up significantly on the CSU’s priority list for state-funded capital outlay program, which allows the campus to begin drawing up preliminary plans and creating working drawings.

“Science II is a classroom building that we have needed for a very long time. Top-notch facilities will help us in our efforts to attract more students to the fields of science and technology,” said Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs Joseph Sheley. “We are especially excited that it will include the Space and Science Center, which will make it an even more valuable resource for our students, and hopefully attract the students of the future.”

The Space and Science Center is expected to feature a planetarium, an observatory, an interactive science center, a space gallery, and a cyberscience faculty/student research laboratory. “We are very pleased that not only will our Space and Science Center become a reality, but that we will gain state-of-the-art science facilities for Sacramento State students,” said College of Natural Sciences and Mathematics Dean Jill Trainer. “It will provide a great way to inspire a love of science in the children of the region and help the University provide top-quality opportunities for students pursing careers in science and technology.”

It is anticipated that construction of the Space and Science Center phase of the project will be funded in the 2009-10 budget from previously approved bond funds. Construction funds for the rest of Science II would come from future bonds.

Media assistance is available by contacting the Sacramento State public affairs office at (916) 278-6156.