Robert R. Shaw Center for STEAM dedicated, aims to inspire innovation Katy ISD dedicated the Robert R. Shaw Center for Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Mathematics April 27.[/caption]

Hundreds of students, faculty and local leaders turned out for the dedication of the Robert R. Shaw Center at 1730 Katyland Drive on April 27. Katy ISD built the $5.4 million, 23,900-square-foot center using funds from the general operating fund, KISD Communications Manager Denisse Coffman said.

Shaw served on the KISD board of trustees from 1997 to 2012. He passed away May 26, 2014, and was remembered at the dedication for his passion for learning and service to the KISD community.

School board trustee member Rebecca Fox spoke at the dedication and attended the center’s inaugural field trip. She said the center will provide space for student innovation.

The facility was designed with an open central area to accommodate exhibits and demonstrations. Around the perimeter, eight individual project bays provide workspace for student projects, including the district’s robotics program. District teachers can reserve space in the center for student use.

The center’s inaugural field trip event was a forensic science workshop April 24 that transformed the space into a crime scene investigation. High school students participating in the district’s forensic science program explored several learning stations that focused on different aspects of forensics study, such as blood splatter analysis and fingerprinting techniques.

Fort Bend County sheriff’s office investigators provided hands-on instruction and a mobile crime lab to demonstrate real-world techniques.

“We had about a thousand students come through [during the center’s CSI day],” instructional specialist Miriam Manuel said.

The center is open to all district schools. Manuel said exhibitions and events will be announced on the Shaw Center website.