Trident Tech unveils $30 million nursing building

By Ashley Barker
abarker@scbiznews.com
Published March 17, 2014

A 90,000-square-foot, $30 million building made its official debut at Trident Technical College last week.

The new Nursing and Science Building, which will allow nursing enrollment to increase from 650 students to more than 1,000 students, was toured by more than 800 invited guests on Friday.

Trident Technical College President Mary Thornley spoke to more than 800 invited guests on Friday about the new Nursing and Science Building. (Photo by Ashley Barker)
Trident Technical College President Mary Thornley spoke to more than 800 invited guests on Friday about the new Nursing and Science Building. (Photo by Ashley Barker)
Trident Tech student Elizabeth Prater, who is pursuing an associate’s degree in nursing, practices techniques on an infant-sized mannequin. (Photo by Ashley Barker)

Trident Tech student Elizabeth Prater, who is pursuing an associate’s degree in nursing, practices techniques on an infant-sized mannequin. (Photo by Ashley Barker)

The facility, located on the college’s main campus off Rivers Avenue, was designed by LS3P Associates of Charleston and built by China Construction America of South Carolina Inc. It features a 300-seat divisible tiered classroom, a nursing resource center, science labs as well nursing simulation labs that include programmable mannequin patients.

Three counties helped pay for the new facility. Charleston County provided $18 million, Berkeley County added $7.5 million, and Dorchester County contributed the remaining $4.5 million.

During the opening ceremony, Trident Technical College President Mary Thornley discussed a recent study by the University of South Carolina that projects a statewide shortage of registered nurses by 2030.

“This is not really about a building. This is an economic development project. This is all about jobs,” Thornley said. “17,438 registered nurses we’ll be short of, but that was before we built this building.”

Tim Callanan, of Berkeley County Council, said Trident Technical College is providing its graduates a set of keys to open a door to opportunity.

“Companies like Boeing and companies like DuPont and, more appropriate to this building, companies such as Roper St. Francis and Trident Health and Palmetto Primary Care, they’re not going to invest in this region unless they’re absolutely confident that we’re going to be able to produce some talented, ready and trained workforce for them to survive,” Callanan said. “That’s what this institution provides.”

The building opened for student use in January. It supports nursing education and the college’s associate in science program. The third floor also houses the college’s biology department and includes classroom and lab space for microbiology, anatomy, physiology and astronomy courses.

Previously, the college’s three nursing programs and 10 of the college’s 13 health science programs were housed in a 54,400-square-foot facility that was built in 1989. Lack of available space created waiting lists for nursing and health science programs.

Nursing and Science Building facts, provided by Trident Technical College:

  • The facility was designed to reduce the buildings’ energy consumption a minimum of 26% below the ASHRAE 90.1-2007 baseline. ASHRAE, a building technology society, focuses on building systems, energy efficiency, indoor air quality, refrigeration and sustainability.
  • All water fountains feature a triple filtration system for water purification.
  • The HVAC system is a high-efficiency, air-cooled chiller.
  • Runoff from the roof is drained to a large underground cistern so it can be reused for toilet flushing and for irrigation.
  • The building uses materials that contain low-emitting levels of volatile organic compounds in accordance with LEED Indoor Environmental Quality requirements.
  • A solar hot water system will increase the energy performance of the building.

Reach Ashley Barker at 843-849-3144 or @AshleyNBarker.

Email Print

Do you give this article a thumbs up? Thumbs_upYes