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HCC Celebrates “Topping Out” of New Science, Engineering, and Technology Building

SET Building

Howard Community College celebrated the “topping out” of its science, engineering, and technology building this morning on the Columbia campus. Dr. Kate Hetherington, college trustees, faculty, staff, and students joined local elected officials at the ceremonial event marking the moment the final steel beam was placed atop the building’s frame.

“The science, engineering, and technology building will have an essential role in educating the future workforce of Howard County,” said Dr. Kathleen Hetherington, president of Howard Community College. “The college appreciates the support of the county and state for helping fund the construction of this building.”

Prior to putting the beam in place, everyone at the event had the opportunity to sign it and write messages.

The building, slated to open in 2017, will be more than 145,000 gross square feet and four stories high, making it the largest building on campus. With funding split between Howard County and the state of Maryland, the $76.7 million building will feature some of the most modern advances in laboratory design, as well as dynamic classroom technology to enhance program delivery. Additional highlights of the building include a cybersecurity lab, engineering build room, digital 3-D printing room, a greenhouse, rooftop observation area, and a drop zone for testing physics experiments. Most importantly, the new SET Building will allow Howard Community College to serve greater numbers of students interested in the fields of science, engineering, and technology. 

The “topping out” marks the completion of the exterior structure of the building. To follow, framing and interior construction work will take place. The building was designed by architect Ayers Saint Gross and is being built by Gilbane Building Company.

NOTE: Photos available on the college’s Flickr account at:

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