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Schoenecker Center STEAM complex exterior view

Engineering at the Schoenecker Center

An interdisciplinary approach to teaching future engineers

Preparing Tomorrow's Engineering Leaders

The value of a St. Thomas education is in the breadth and diversity of perspectives we foster. The Center's open floor design and flexible collaboration spaces will put learning on display. It is designed to encourage collaboration between diverse voices while providing our engineering students with the experience employers value.

The future of work is at the intersection of many disciplines. Interdisciplinary learning and collaboration inspire creativity, experimentation and discovery. These activities are critical to the emergence of innovative ideas that work in the real world. Preparing students for the jobs of today - and tomorrow - the Schoenecker Center will provide a home for powerful training in these critical skills for our students.

St. Thomas Schoenecker Center grand staircase

The Schoenecker Center Has Opened!

St. Thomas officially opened the doors to the Schoenecker Center on Feb. 5, 2024. Watch this video to see and hear how the Schoenecker Center is further transforming the learning experience for St. Thomas students.

Schoenecker Center High Bay

Advanced square footage dedicated to engineering

Adding nearly 60,000 square footage dedicated to engineering, the new spaces will transform how the School of Engineering collaborates with partners across campus and educates students in engineering. The design of the space will increase the agility of the engineering department for course offerings and allow for more experiments in areas such as sustainability, robotics, and energy.

The High Bay will be an area for complex large-scale experimental research, student demonstrations that supplement conceptual lecture content, and student engineering design competitions. The high bay will provide a facility where students can see the scales in action and work with the materials as they behave in their built environment and gain an appreciation through hands-on work for the implications of their design choices.

Schoenecker Center collaboration space

Collaborative environment with multiple disciplines, including communication and the arts

Designed with input from various corporate industry partners, the center will foster more collaboration among students who otherwise may not have worked together in a typical university setting. The facility is built to be adaptable and ready for use in several different conditions, flexible enough to continue to evolve as further emerging technologies come about, and supportive of student collaborations and research across campus.

The community spaces may host local K-12 schools, community gatherings and STEM and music partnerships.

Schoenecker Center connector hub

Student-centered design

The Schoenecker Center's open floor design will put learning on display, which, in addition to the complex's flexible collaboration spaces, will help students to grow their appreciation of other disciplines. Setting up our students to thrive in an increasingly globalized world, where employers want culturally competent workers who can appreciate and navigate diverse stories and viewpoints, is critical.

"The hub of activity might be outside of the classroom. It is in the hallways, it is in the collaboration hubs, it is in these bridges that connect all the disciplines." - Don Weinkauf, dean of the School of Engineering.

The future for our St. Thomas students is going to require them to have not only human literacy, but also technical literacy and digital literacy. All three of those elements are built into the Schoenecker Center.

Don Weinkauf, Dean, School of Engineering