New Science and Technology Building Opens at Newark Campus

Ribbon-Cutting Ceremony to Be Held August 13


Construction of the much-anticipated John and Mary Alford Center for Science and Technology on the shared Newark campus of The Ohio State University and Central Ohio Technical College (COTC) is complete, and the public is invited to tour the brand-new STEM facility at a ribbon-cutting ceremony on Friday, August 13 at 9 a.m. 

Located at 1193 University Drive, the Alford Center occupies the southwest region of the campus’s academic core. The three-story, 60,000-square-foot building houses classrooms, science labs, research labs, student study areas, conference rooms and faculty offices to address both institutions’ growing need for additional laboratory, research, technology and student-centered space. Although COTC and Ohio State Newark will share all general classrooms, smart labs and common areas, each institution has its own dedicated space within the building. 

Modern three story building

On the first floor, COTC students will learn in the Licking Memorial Health Systems Simulation Center. This multi-disciplinary space, mirroring an acute care hospital, contains two patient rooms, an emergency room and an operating room with an adjoining scrub-in station so COTC students can experience various realistic medical scenarios in a learning environment.

Ohio State Newark’s dedicated space includes the LeFevre Foundation Biology Suite, Newark Campus Development Fund Anatomy Suite and Melissa Warner Bow Earth Sciences Suite on the second floor, and the Ariel Corporation General Chemistry Suite, Raymond H. & Beryl Dean Penick Organic Chemistry Suite and Ariel Corporation Research Corridor on the third floor. With these new classrooms and labs, Ohio State Newark will offer more second-year courses so students can take advantage of the personalized nature of the Newark campus’s learning environment and lower tuition for an additional year before having to transition to the Columbus campus.

The Alford Center is a long-term investment in our region’s economy and will strengthen campus connections and collaborations with local business and industry to meet growing workforce needs. Construction of the Alford Center cost approximately $32 million. COTC and Ohio State Newark invested a combined $18 million, and 281 unique donors pledged nearly $14 million to support the construction of the building. Ohio State Newark and COTC recognize many business and community supporters, including Ariel Corporation, the Gilbert Reese Family Foundation, the LeFevre Foundation, the Newark Campus Development Fund, Park National Bank and its associates, and Licking Memorial Health Systems, among others for their support.

Classroom with long tables, chairs facing whiteboard

Classroom circular tables and whiteboard

 John and Mary Alford
The name of this state-of-the-art facility pays tribute to John and Mary Alford, who were unwavering supporters of COTC and Ohio State Newark for several decades. Through their early involvement and the continued involvement of their children, they have helped shape the college and university’s co-located, cost-shared partnership as a model for other institutions of higher education around the country. In recognition of their parents’ tremendous support of the local community and specifically the Newark campus, Ronald Alford and Barbara and Michael Cantlin pledged a generous lead gift of $2.5 million. The leadership of Ohio State Newark and COTC are proud to honor Mr. and Mrs. Alford’s extraordinary legacy of community involvement and support by honorifically naming this beautiful facility The John and Mary Alford Center for Science and Technology. 

Central Ohio Technical College and The Ohio State University at Newark have forged an outstanding array of educational opportunities for the central Ohio region and beyond. This partnership is viewed as a model for higher education in the state of Ohio.  At Central Ohio Technical College, students gain hands-on, applicable experience to begin working in the field, or to transfer those credits toward a bachelor’s degree program. The Ohio State University at Newark offers an academic environment that is inclusive of diversity, challenging but supportive with world-renowned professors and access to Ohio State’s more than 200 majors.


COTC is a fully accredited, public college dedicated to providing high-quality, accessible programs of technical education in response to current and emerging employment needs. COTC has four campus locations: Newark, Coshocton, Knox and Pataskala.