Kirkwood Regional Center at the University of Iowa
Kirkwood Regional Centers are the result of an innovative partnership between Kirkwood Community College and area school districts. The Centers offer highly technical state-of-the-art labs and career academies providing high school students with access to hands-on technical programs, arts, and science classes. Students have the opportunity to explore career options while earning concurrent high school and college credit at no cost. The Kirkwood Regional Center at the University of Iowa will be the first of its kind in the nation to combine the strengths of a research university with those of a community college and industry partners. Located at the University of Iowa’s Research Park, the Center’s program is built around STEM education. The unique location offers students access to the high-tech companies and research centers on the University’s campus and the opportunity to do research with the faculty. In addition, the Center will provide the University’s education students and professors with opportunities to test innovative STEM teaching strategies.
The 101,000-square-foot facility was designed to offer a variety of programs. Unique educational spaces include inquiry-based experiential classrooms; medical training facilities; wet and dry chemistry labs; computer labs; a testing center; industrial modules for advanced manufacturing and engineering technology; welding and metal working; and an innovation lab.Large commons areas and collaborative spaces throughout the building offer room for formal and informal learning opportunities. The building was designed around sustainable principles and features a large photovoltaic array, which reduces the building’s energy consumption by 25 percent.