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Enhancing Facilities for Agricultural Research, Teaching and Extension Programs


<p>Proposed Facility Engineering Technology Programs, agricultural and electronic, at the university are currently housed in two separate buildings, both of which suffer from the lack of up-to-date facilities in which to operate their educational programs and administrative services. The 45-year old Ellison Building contains three shops/labs, one large classroom, office and related support areas. Over the years, lab/shop areas have been increasingly and negatively impacted by having to partition these areas to accommodate functions, such as a computer lab, which were not required or anticipated when the facility was originally constructed. Similarly, the Electronic Engineering Technology program is currently housed in converted classroom and laboratory spaces in the near 60-year old Alva Tabor Agriculture Building. There is not adequate space for current programs and future growth. This inadequacy is reflected in an ABET citation on lack of adequate lab and office spaces. Remodeling and expanding the Ellison Building will include: Expanding and dividing one large classroom to create two smaller and more functional ones; revising office space to create a secretarial/waiting area for students, including an interior window to monitor traffic entering or leaving the facility; creating space to separate woodworking, carpentry and electrical teaching areas from metalworking functions (welding and cutting); and increasing overall functionality and capabilities of the existing building by adding additional office, classroom, shop and support areas. While noted activities will significantly support current and future Agricultural Instruction programs, Cooperative Extension Program staff and clients will also realize benefits through facilities supporting small and part-time farmers through enhanced abilities to study farm construction and machinery maintenance as well as become familiar with the increasing use of electronic technology in food production and environmental quality/safety. </p>
<p>Objectives of this proposal are well aligned with components of the university's mission which specify: Expansion of service beyond the campus, as well as within, so that the institution addresses in a meaningful manner the broad diversity - human and technical- of needs in our home region and state as well as nationally and internationally. Full development of all components of the Land-Grant function to include a basic and applied research program, a comprehensive public service and technical assistance program, and a full range of degree programs in the food and agricultural sciences, the mechanical arts and related areas. Provision of a productive environment for cutting-edge academic and practical research in, among other fields, agriculture, aquaculture, veterinary medicine, biotechnology, energy, social and behavioral science, and the humanities. </p>
<p>Engineering Technologies Upgrades of lab, classroom, administrative and other support areas for Engineering Technology Programs (Agricultural Engineering Technology and Electronic Engineering Technology) would yield benefits for both instructional and outreach programs through realization of the following objectives: Expand the C. L. Ellison Agricultural Engineering Technology Building to allow Electronic Engineering Technology and Agricultural Technology to occupy a single building and eliminate unneeded duplication of computer labs and related learning support areas Modernize existing labs through elimination and replacement of outmoded equipment and modifying space layouts to provide improved student observation and work spaces. Reclaim existing lab space by removing a computer lab and related spaces which have, over the years, been moved into former clear lab space due to insufficient space in the current building. Move specialty operations such as welding into separate areas away from nonmetal operations such as woodworking. Develop lab spaces to accommodate needs of students farmers and other Cooperative Extension clients who are seeking basic instruction in subjects such as farm safety, agricultural construction, electronic applications to precision cultivation, pesticide applications, and post-harvest food safety and preservation methodologies.</p>

More information

<p>NON-TECHNICAL SUMMARY: <br/>Fort Valley State University is proposing two projects to be funded by the 2013-2017 1890 Facilities Grant Program: 1) remodeling and expansion of the Ellison Agricultural Engineering Technology Building and 2) expansion of the Meat Technology Center (Animal and Food Science Building) through the addition of research laboratories, classroom, offices and related support areas. Both projects are driven by the need for additional and updated space for instructional, outreach and research programs. Of these two projects, the university has elected to focus first on remodeling and expanding the Ellison Agricultural Engineering Technology Building.
<p>APPROACH: <br/>Expand planning committee to include selected faculty/staff, students and stakeholders to aid in creating a building programs (desired spaces, layouts, special features and other items) related to design of the proposed facilities. Present building programs to the Board of Regents, University System of Georgia and request assignment of project number for the facility. This represents Board approval of project planning, and requires assurance of available funding. Using guidelines in the Board's Building Project Procedure manual, the Board will select architectural and Engineering (A&E) to design the facilities in consultation with the College's planning committee(s). Planning committee will meet periodically with selected design professionals to monitor adherence of plans to desired facility feature as initially outlined in the building program
presented to and approved by the Board of Regents. <p>Upon completion of working drawings, project directors will submit the plans to university officials, the Board of Regents and NIFA for review and approval. Following approval of plans, the Board will advertise for construction bids from general contractors. After a specified period, the Board will open bids and award contracts. Construction will begin and be monitored throughout the building period by University and Board of Regents personnel.

Kannan, Govind
Fort Valley State University
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