For Animal Sciences Building, everything old is new again

State-of the-art

Animal Sciences Lab
A new state-of-the-art laboratory in the renovated Animal Sciences Building.

A lot has changed since 1959, but until recently, that list did not include much about the Animal Sciences Building on the Colorado State University campus. Now the historic structure on the Monfort Quad has undergone a complete attic-to-basement renovation that has added state-of-the-art laboratories, smart classrooms, and a celebration of the building’s history through art and memorabilia.

“We had gotten to a point where we couldn’t continue to house our faculty and students in an antiquated building with labs and classrooms that didn’t meet our needs in the 1990s, much less in 2012,” said Department of Animal Sciences Head Kevin Pond.

Faculty, staff and students moved out almost two years ago for the renovation to begin. The newly renovated Animal Sciences Building came online once again in August 2014 and a Building Unveiling Celebration was held on Sept. 17.

Preparing for global challenges

“We needed a space where we could educate our students for industry careers and professional schools,” said College of Agricultural Sciences Dean Craig Beyrouty. “Now we have a facility that is the envy of our peers, a facility where we can focus on food safety, nutrition, and animal physiology in a way that will position our students to enter the world better prepared to tackle global challenges based on their CSU education.”

Animal Sciences Tony and Kevin
CSU President Tony Frank talks with Animal Sciences Department Head Kevin Pond at the ribbon cutting.

The changes to the classroom and teaching spaces have been dramatic. New lab spaces have been constructed for anatomy and physiology. Where subjects like animal dissection previously had been done through demonstrations in regular classrooms, this formative student experience is now provided in classrooms with multimedia technology where students can have a hands-on experience, not just watch instructors.

The building also has new spaces dedicated to teaching food safety and microbiology. Safety is a recurring theme throughout the building both in subject matter areas but also in high security laboratory spaces  where bacteria including salmonella and E.coli can be studied and contained.

“This is precisely the kind of laboratory that must be brought up to the latest standards,” said Pond. “Our new BSLII lab now has the highest marks for safety and security.”

One of the best

Both CSU’s Department of Animal Sciences and its food safety program are among the most highly ranked in the country, often landing in the top five nationally. The program’s ranking and the new facility  play a central role in recruiting new faculty members and students from around the world to CSU, according to Pond.

“We know that our faculty and students can choose from a number of highly-ranked programs all over the country,” he said. “That they choose to come to CSU testifies to the strength of our research and teaching and the regard with which we are held by our peer institutions.”

Animal Sciences Cam
A CSU student and Cam the Ram were among the attendees at the Animal Sciences Building ribbon cutting.

Student input

Much of the building’s design was also created with input from students: common areas, artistic elements, and even the choice of countertops throughout the building. Countertops found in offices, shared spaces, and even in the bathrooms are made from recycled materials.

Recycled materials are just one way in which the building meets new energy efficiency standards, including LEED standards. New windows have added more natural light to the space, reducing the energy costs of light and heat, and central air has been added.

“The temperature in this building is much more tolerable,” said Pond. “Students will no longer need gloves in the classroom during the winter, except for maybe latex gloves for new hands-on activities.”

More information

For more information about the Animal Sciences Building or about funding opportunities, please contact Kris McKay, associate director of Development at or 970-491-0909.