Algonquin College receives a facelift

PEMBROKE – Algonquin College has a new location, and they invited thousands of students from around the area to come by and take a look.

The new lakefront campus has been completed, and in order to celebrate they hosted an open house on November 2.
The project has been ongoing for seven years, with construction beginning only 17 months ago.
The open house was a chance for students to take a tour as a group and get a feel for the classrooms, fitness centre, gymnasium, cafeteria and the study rooms in the library.
The prior Algonquin campus did not have the space for a fitness centre or a gymnasium, so the school took this opportunity to really go all out.
The gymnasium is unique with its poured rubber flooring, and the fitness centre has a bit of a technology touch.
Each treadmill has its own personal television, so exercisers can choose what they watch as they walk or run.
Marie Mask was one of the tour guides and is the capital campaign administrator.
Mask was in charge of fundraising for the new $36 million campus, and so far has raised over $2 million for the project.
The college purchased 14 acres of land from the city, and have so far constructed on nine acres.
They are hoping to soon upgrade their school with on-campus housing, otherwise known as residence buildings.
Sixteen programs are currently available, with another two programs to come next year.
Each room has been equipped with a new projector, so students who are unable to make it into class can still be involved.
Another new addition is the censored lights placed throughout the building. After three minutes of no motion, the lights will go off, and once motion is again sensed, they will turn back on.
“It’s one of the environmental things we have here now,” Mask said.
She added that the library has many bonuses compared to the old campus, with many study rooms for group projects, and wide windows for daydreamers.
“You’ll have everything you need in one spot,” Mask said.
Heather Miller, coordinator of the practical nurse program, said the new lab is a major improvement from their last.
“We have mannequins that basically come to life… It challenges the students in more of a real-life situation,” Miller said.
The mannequins are connected to a system that allows the professor to alter their sickness. This gives the students a chance to all try and diagnose the “patient”.
Along with the typical lying down mannequins, they also have one that gives birth, giving the students the hands-on experience they are looking for.
Algonquin College considers themselves a hands-on school, so with the many new technologies available they have given their students many of the things in the new campus that they didn’t have in the old.
“It’s bigger, more modernized, it has a gym and it seems to suit the needs of the students,” Miller added.
Story continues in the November 7, 2012 issue of The Valley Gazette.