Harvey Mudd College received approval July 16 from the city of Claremont to commence site preparation work to construct the McGregor Computer Science Center, a three-story, 36,000-square-foot academic building, which will provide a much-needed new home for the rapidly growing Computer Science Department.
Located on the corner of Dartmouth Ave. and Platt Blvd., the building will enhance Harvey Mudd’s unique position as a leader in developing computer science teaching methods.
Computer science, including joint majors, now rivals engineering as one of the most popular majors on campus, and the number of students from the other Claremont Colleges taking courses and majoring in CS at HMC has tripled. Construction of the new computer science center will help meet this demand by creating room to grow the CS faculty, the Clinic and project studios, teaching and research laboratories, and collaboration spaces.
The first floor will house a permanent cross-disciplinary makerspace, open to students at Harvey Mudd and across The Claremont Colleges. The space will link to existing, remodeled engineering machine shops, establishing the main level of the building as a multidisciplinary, collaborative hub.
Each of the College’s nearly 900 students take one or more computer science courses, with the entire first-year class taking an introductory computing course. The low student-faculty ratio (8:1) and emphasis on undergraduate education provide an ideal “laboratory” in which pedagogical innovations are created. Harvey Mudd’s Computer Science Department is leading the way in changing how colleges and universities approach computer science education and, as a result, is helping build a more capable and diverse pipeline.
The building will cost approximately $33 million and is expected to be completed in March 2021.