The university's Montgomery County Campus will open the doors on a new stage in its life with the dedication on May 19 of a second campus building.
The new Academic and Research Building will add 49,000 square feet of state-of-the-art classroom and laboratory facilities to the increasingly popular Montgomery County Campus, whose enrollment has grown from 800 students when it opened in 1988 to 8,000 students in the current academic year.
"The new facility will accommodate increasing enrollment for current programs, offer the opportunity for the creation of new programs and bring full-time research to the campus for the first time," says Elaine Amir, campus director. "This shows our commitment to providing a multipurpose campus that all the divisions of Hopkins can use."
Amir cites the example of the well-known Arts and Sciences summer program for high school students, which will be offered at Montgomery County for the first time this summer.
Currently, the schools of Arts and Sciences, Engineering, Professional Studies in Business and Education, and Public Health offer a total of 40 part-time undergraduate and graduate degree programs at the Montgomery County Campus.
The high-tech building will help the campus strengthen its role as a resource for biotechnology and information technology industries in the Baltimore-Washington corridor. Included in the facility are four computer labs; 22 "smart" classrooms configured for video conferencing, multimedia presentations and high-speed transmission of large databases; a coffee house; a bookstore; and student meeting spaces.
"The new Academic and Research Building is yet another fine example of The Johns Hopkins University's commitment to academic excellence," says Montgomery County executive Doug Duncan, who will speak at the building's dedication. "This facility exemplifies the benefits that come from government, academia and business working together."
At the same ceremony, Hopkins President William R. Brody will speak on the growth of the Montgomery County Campus as a high-tech life sciences center, and Sen. Jay Rockefeller (D-W.V.) will formally announce that the building's third floor has been selected to house a branch of the Blanchette Rockefeller Neuroscience Institute. The institute is a partnership between West Virginia University, where it is headquartered, and Johns Hopkins.
Ten to 12 researchers will come to the Montgomery County Campus for positions with the institute, which will work to develop new and better ways to diagnose and treat conditions such as Alzheimer's disease.
The researchers may teach some part-time classes. In addition, the institute will bring opportunities for students to work in research laboratories.
The Academic and Research Building is part of a master plan that envisions five buildings for the campus; planning for building three is already under way.