Heroic effort gets Studio Physics classes and others back into their places in stricken Carothers Hall

Carothers Hall a few days after an electrical fire that shut the building through the first week of classes.

Heroic efforts by FSU’s facilities and information technology staff have gotten Studio Physics classes, staff for the FSU-Teach math and science teacher preparation program and others back into the 60-year-old Carothers Hall only two and a half weeks after the facility was damaged by an electrical fire.

Originally built as a home for FSU’s College of Education (which is now based in the Stone Building) the facility is now home to classrooms, faculty offices, IT staff and even FSU’s Environmental Health and Safety unit.

Damage from the fire, which cost about half a million dollars to repair, drove many classes – including many studio physics classes – out to lecture and seminar halls in other buildings for the first week of classes, which began August 26.

IT staff were working in Carothers Hall on Sunday of Labor Day week to make sure that internet and other computing services were available for the resumption of classes in the building this morning.

FSU has three SCALE-UP classrooms capable of hosting studio physics classes. The first (HCB 308) was opened in 2008 in a large new classroom building that opened at the same time. It has a capacity of 72 students. As the Studio Physics Program grew and demand for the SCALE-UP classroom design it uses also grew among faculty from other disciplines, the university renovated two classrooms in Carothers Hall into the SCALE-UP design. The older of those classrooms holds 63 students, while the newer one holds 81 students.

Classes scheduled for both of the Carothers studio science classrooms were rescheduled for the first week of classes into lecture and seminar spaces that were not designed for the highly interactive studio physics classes. All but one of the studio physics classes scheduled for Carothers were actually held in the lecture and seminar spaces during the first week of class. The one that did not meet (by decision of the instructor – me) will hold its first day of class tomorrow morning.

A Studio Physics class being held during the Fall 2018 semester in Carothers 315, the newer and larger (81 students) of the two SCALE-UP classrooms in Carothers Hall.
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