A new Lone Star College satellite center at the corner of Fry and Clay roads opened Aug. 26 with the beginning of the school year. A ribbon cutting was held by the Cy-Fair Houston Chamber of Commerce for the 85,000-square-foot Cypress Center Sept. 12.
“Over the last few years we’ve been building facilities not just to accommodate the students who have made Lone Star the fastest growing institution in the state, but to invigorate the economic vitality of the communities we serve,” LSCS Chancellor Richard Carpenter said to a crowd of roughly 100 people. “We’re building [the students’] future, but we’re also building the future of our communities. That is a role we do not take lightly.”
The center has 1,381 students enrolled for its first semester. The total capacity is estimated at 3,200, according to Deana Sheppard, associate vice-president for college centers.
The Cypress Center features 22 general use and computer classrooms with 500 computers, as well as three industrial workforce labs. The center was devised as a means to deal with enrollment growth at LSC–Cy-Fair, particularly in workforce and engineering programs, LSC–Cy-Fair president Audre Levy said.
“This was in response to the community,” she said. “Workforce programs are cutting edge to what is happening in society.”
Programs in welding, machining, geographic informational systems, drafting and engineering technology have all been transferred to the Cypress Center from the LSC–Cy-Fair main campus. The move to the new facility allows the programs to expand, with new workforce labs providing students with state-of-the-art equipment, Levy said.
The center also features a bookstore, tutor lab, culinary/craft lab and a biology science lab, as well as 675 parking spaces. In addition to workforce programs, students can take standard academic classes such as history, math, English and art.
LSCS administrators first determined the need for a new center based on enrollment projections in 2008, and money to fund the center came from a $420 million bond election passed that year.
“On behalf of all the students, faculty and staff, I take this moment to thank [everyone] for the support,” Carpenter said. “Without it, we wouldn’t be here today.”