With work on the Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation’s headquarters across from the University of Central Oklahoma campus in its final stages, the school could break ground on a proposed forensic science center by spring.

Mike Sanders, director of special projects at UCO, told those at the Edmond Economic Development Authority’s Economic Development Partners’ meeting that the center will separate UCO from other universities.

“We can’t beat OU in football. We can’t beat OSU in football. But we can beat them in our niche as the world’s leading authority in forensic science,” he said Friday.

Currently forensic science students are forced to take their courses in several buildings across the UCO campus. The center is targeted to open by the fall semester of 2009, Sanders said. The OSBI facility could be completed by the end of the year.

“We’re looking forward to the completion of the OSBI lab,” said EEDA director Janet Yowell. “It’s going to be a very interesting facility and I imagine they will be giving tours during the first week they’re open.”

Sanders said other projects at the school will bring new opportunities for students. A small parking area to the east of Thatcher Hall soon will become the Center For Transformative Education. “This will be like a high-tech, high-touch boardroom,” Sanders said. He expects the groundbreaking to be in early spring.

“I think this will help students to be more readily absorbed into the workplace.”

Sanders said UCO officials are working with leaders from Oklahoma City and the U.S. Olympic Committee to make the metropolitan area a summer training location for rowing, fencing and gymnastics.

jwilliams@edmondsun.com |

341-2121, ext. 108

Recommended for you