Tidal Hall Nears Completion, Island University Celebrates with ‘Topping Out’ Ceremony

Published: November 07, 2017

Tidal Hall Nears Completion, Island University Celebrates with ‘Topping Out’ Ceremony

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas – Dr. Kelly Quintanilla, Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi President and CEO shared her vision for the future of research at the Island University on Nov. 7 during a “Topping Out” ceremony for phase one of the new Life Sciences Research and Engineering Building, Tidal Hall.

“With the addition of Tidal Hall, our outstanding, nationally recognized life sciences programs will have additional space for researching and teaching,” Quintanilla told the crowd of students, faculty, staff and community members. “Here at A&M-Corpus Christi, we understand that teaching and research are both needed to create a robust campus experience for our all our students – that is precisely what will happen inside Tidal Hall.”

The “Topping Out” ceremony took place near the construction site of Tidal Hall. In a tradition that was started by High-Steel Ironworkers in 1896, a ceremonial beam was placed atop Tidal Hall to signify the building had reached its maximum height. At the end of the ceremony, Quintanilla, Dr. Cherie McCollough, Associate Professor of Science Education and Coordinator for the Science, Math & Technology Education program at Texas A&M-Corpus Christi, project partner representatives and community VIPs were asked to sign the final beam. Islander students, faculty and staff also had the opportunity to stop by the construction site to sign the beam the day before the ceremony.

The new three-story building, which is scheduled to open fall 2018, will support many of Island University’s fastest growing programs within the College of Science and Engineering. The facility will provide students and faculty with 111,000 square feet of improved research space including new instructional labs and customized research labs. Island University students can look forward to expanded opportunities for hands-on research in biology, biomedical sciences, fisheries and mariculture and marine biology.

“Each floor will have a dedicated workspace for undergraduate, master’s and doctoral students,” said McCollough. “I believe that having all of this new research space will bring the University closer to achieving Emerging Research University status and will provide unique research opportunities to our students.”

Throughout the building process, project partners from Fulton* Coastcon General Contractors, Stantec, and AG|CM Inc. worked diligently to ensure the new building would meet the needs of the University’s faculty and the needs of the University’s growing student population.

“With more than 12,000 students enrolled at A&M-Corpus Christi, we continue to remain committed to every students’ success and closing the gaps in educational attainment.” Said Quintanilla. “Our students, many of whom are first-generation college students, deserve the best resources available to accomplish their educational goals.”

During the ceremony, Diana Del Angel, a Ph.D. student in the Coastal and Marine System Science program and 2011 alumna said that the research opportunities and facilities a University has to offer directly influenced her decision when choosing a graduate school.

“I believe access to excellent facilities translates to exceptional faculty and staff, which translates to high-quality graduate students who will come here to get a master’s degree or Ph.D.,” said Del Angel. “I know it was access to the researchers and facilities at Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi that were key in promoting my success.”

In September 2016, The Texas A&M University System Board of Regents appropriated $60 million for the construction of Tidal Hall. For more information on construction progress and a live feed of the construction site, visit expansion.tamucc.edu.