Donor Gift Funds High Bay for Schoenecker Center at St. Thomas

The University of St. Thomas School of Engineering announced it received a generous gift commitment from the Alfred A. Iversen and Family Foundation to support the construction of a state-of-the-art high bay facility within the Schoenecker Center, which is currently under construction on the university’s south campus.

Upon completion, the Iversen High Bay will be a 5,000-square-foot facility for large-scale engineering testing and demonstration where undergraduate students attending the University of St. Thomas will have the unique opportunity to experience hands-on experimentation as part of their regular curriculum.

The Iversen High Bay is part of the $110 million state-of-the-art STEAM complex that aims to break down barriers in collaborative learning.

The Iversen High Bay will be equipped with a reaction wall and floor, hydraulic actuators capable of up to 200,000 pounds of force in all three principal axes, and a large open area for construction material preparation and fabrication. The space will accommodate large-scale testing of structural systems and provide opportunities to demonstrate the behavior of various structural components, such as reinforced concrete and steel beams.

Creative and curious opportunity abound, the high bay was designed to be an engineer’s “sandbox” for experiential learning and contextualization of theoretical curriculum.

"We are grateful to Al and his family for helping to usher in a new era of engineering right here in the heart of St. Paul," said Don Weinkauf, dean of the School of Engineering. “We are literally building something truly special here in Minnesota and this facility will help support innovation in structural engineering around the world.”

The Schoenecker Center – set to open for classes in 2024 – will be a world-class complex, aimed at fostering interdisciplinary learning, including science, technology, engineering, arts and math (STEAM).

Schoenecker Center
The first-of-its-kind Schoenecker Center will open its doors in 2024, fostering an inclusive approach to interdisciplinary education.