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PSU’s visionary approach to education is tearing down academic silos and creating seven interdisciplinary academic clusters that promote an integrated educational experience. The Integrated Cluster approach prepares students to be 21st century marketplace standouts and builds real-world collaborations between the University, industry, and communities.
At the core—the heart—of each cluster is the critical need for Open Laboratories: transformational spaces for students and faculty to engage with businesses and communities and apply their classroom experiences to solve challenging problems. For the Health and Human Enrichment (HHE) cluster, the Open Lab is the AllWell Complex on the Holderness Campus. The University plans to build new and upgrade current facilities at ALLWell to integrate academics, athletics, and outreach.
“This exciting strategic initiative lets us maximize the benefit of PSU’s splendid natural resources,” says Don Birx, president of Plymouth State University. “The new, world-class facilities will enable students to develop their academic and athletic prowess, while linking outdoors, indoors, tourism, health care, sports, hands-on learning, and regional economic growth. Thanks to the New Hampshire State Legislature, Plymouth State will receive $3 million toward the construction of this Open Lab.”
Among PSU’s high-level priorities are recruiting and retaining top students, particularly those who are committed to active lifestyles. PSU’s lack of turf fields is a huge challenge in attracting first-class student athletes in all sports.
The Strength and Conditioning Open Lab offers transformational opportunities to students, the community, and the region. It will be an academic hub, integrating knowledge gained in the classroom with hands-on expertise refined in the Open Lab. “This new Open Lab will encourage real-world teamwork,” says Gail Mears, dean College of Education, Health and Human Services. “It will incorporate multiple perspectives and solutions, create partnerships with industries, organizations and communities, and address gaps in the region’s economy.”
For additional information about supporting this new initiative through a philanthropic investment or bequest, please contact Vice President of University Advancement Paula Lee Hobson or Director of Development John Scheinman.
■ Orna Feldman