Gateway Community College (GCC) celebrated May 29 the naming of The Regional Water Authority and The Watershed Fund Chemistry Lab. Larry L. Bingaman, president and chief executive officer, The Regional Water Authority, and Richard G. Bell, Esq., president, The Watershed Fund, were on hand to commemorate the event, as well as Dorsey L. Kendrick, president of Gateway, and Thomas S. Griggs, Jr., chair of the Gateway Community College Foundation Board. Professor Robert E. Tremblay, Math/Science Department Chair, at Gateway closed the evening’s program.
“Being in this beautiful building must be a dream come true for students," Bingaman said. "With this new lab, students may expand their interest from environmental studies to making a career in the water business to help fill some of the vacancies that will be created as the baby boomers retire."
He continued, "A safe, reliable water supply is essential to a healthy, thriving, and vibrant community. New qualified employees will be needed so that we can continue to provide high-quality drinking water to the region. We are excited about the new discoveries and learning that can occur in this chemistry laboratory at Gateway Community College. We are pleased to play a part as Gateway students tap the possibilities that are ahead of them.”
The Mathematics and Natural Science Department at Gateway offers a broad range of courses in Biology, Chemistry, Earth Science, Environmental Science, Mathematics and Physics. The advanced equipment in The Regional Water Authority and The Watershed Fund Chemistry Lab enables Gateway students enrolled in chemistry and environmental science courses to review and learn various chemistry concepts, make up chemical solutions and gain a strong foundation within their respective academic program.
“I speak for the entire college community when I say that we are so grateful for the longtime friendship and support of Larry Bingaman and the Regional Water Authority,” GCC President Dorsey Kendrick said. “They have been generous with our students in the past. This constant commitment to student success, particularly in the sciences, is punctuated by incredible generosity with The Watershed Fund to name this Chemistry Lab. We appreciate all that this means to our faculty and students, and to the future of science education at Gateway Community College.”
The lab features student lab stations, which have electricity and data service. They all contain constant volume fume hoods as well as a pass-through fume hood. The state-of-the-art lab is equipped with a modern safety station containing an eye-wash sink, safety shower, fire blanket, and first-aid kit. The lab also has a ceiling-mounted projection unit and instructional station and all the necessary laboratory equipment, including glassware and hotplates.
“The GCC Foundation is proud to celebrate the Regional Water Authority and Watershed Fund’s naming of the Chemistry Lab,” said Thomas Griggs Jr., chair of the Gateway Community College Foundation Board. “This naming is evidence of their strong commitment to Gateway’s students and to the future of professions that require a solid foundation in STEM (science, engineering, technology and math) education.”
The South Central Connecticut Regional Water Authority (SCCRWA) is a non-profit, public corporation and political subdivision of the state. Their mission is to provide their customers with high quality water at a reasonable cost while promoting the preservation of watershed land and aquifers. SCCRWA provides approximately 48 million gallons of water per day to some 430,000 consumers in 15 communities in our region. The source of this water is a system of watershed and aquifer areas that cover about 120 square miles within 24 municipalities. Much of SCCRWA’s 27,000 acres of land is managed for watershed protection, timber resource conservation, wildlife habitat, open space, education, and research.
The Watershed Fund is a non-profit organization whose mission is to protect water quality throughout the region by acquiring ecologically significant watershed land and by educating citizens as to how they can help preserve the environment and open space on watershed land. The Fund provides environmental grants, awards scholarships and protects threatened lands.