TCTC media center gets transformed

CHAMPION — Trumbull Career and Technical Center seniors returning to school this year received a surprise — the media center had been transformed into a new STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) and fabricating area with state-of-the art equipment.

Laura Henning, media specialist at TCTC, said the media center was remodeled last spring and completed this summer to create three new areas — a fabricating lab, a learning commons with flexible learning space and Z-space STEM lab with virtual reality and 3D printer equipment.

Henning said it was the goal of Paula Baco, program / tech prep supervisor and the former TCTC media specialist, to have the media center updated with the newest equipment and trends.

”She (Baco) and I have been reading about what has taken place at media centers and wanted to make it a reality here. After attending different conferences and reading about the latest trends in media center, our minds collaborated to make this a reality for TCTC,” Henning said.

To make the changes, some walls and rooms in the media center were removed, new carpeting, furniture and flooring were installed, and a variety of new equipment brought in.

Henning said in the commons area students can do regular school work.

”Students can come here as a class or as individuals to the lab. There is virtual reality and 3D manipulation to cover a variety of classes,” Henning said, noting there is equipment to handle human anatomy, zoology, dissections, circuitry, testing for engines and motors and looking at elements, atoms and molecules.

Henning said the fabricating lab includes laser engravers, vinyl printer cutter, milling machine, scanners, makerspace items and 3D printers and scanners. She said there is also a Green Room used for photographer and videography available.

Already, Business Professionals of America Club members have used items for upcoming competitions and students preparing for the Physics Olympics.

Kris Doran, interactive multi-media instructor, said the students will use the equipment for many projects.

He said many high school do not have all equipment that is available at TCTC.

Jeremy Walker, 18, of LaBrae, in multimedia, said “It is really cool to have the additions. It looks a lot more open.”

Alex Hutchison, 17, of Champion, said, “It will be helpful when the biology classes need to see what is involved with dissections. They will get a prelook at what takes place.”

Geneva VanHorn, 17, of Maplewood, in multimedia, said she can see where her classes will be in the media center often for class projects and learning new skills.