During a groundbreaking ceremony on Friday, Cal State Long Beach school officials announced the construction of a $30 million College of Continuing and Professional Education building.
The new CCPE building, located near the social sciences and public administration department on lower campus, will consist of 20 additional general classrooms, which will house graduate level interdisciplinary courses and allow students to seek training or skills that will help them advance in their professions.
“The building’s purpose is to serve as added space for adults who are matriculated in a graduate program or certificate program,” CCPE Dean Jeet Joshee said.
Standing three stories high, the CCPE building will be the first net-zero energy project — meaning that the building will produce on its own any energy required — in the Cal State University system.
Although the near decade-long process of creating a new net-zero energy building for CCPE is finally over, the financial aspect in regards to the cost of the project is still a plan the school is working on.
President Jane Close Conoley said that in order to pay for the $30 million construction project, CCPE will use revenue which it has saved over the past 10 years from tuition fees.
Being that it is a self-supported college, its financial independence excludes CCPE from receiving federal funding.
Despite having saved millions from tuition revenue for this project, CCPE only produced half the amount required for the construction of the new building, as a result state bonds and borrowed funds will be used to cover the remaining cost of the project — which the school will pay back by adjusting annual budgets.
The strict laws surrounding the self-supporting college not only prevent it from receiving federal funding, but also prevent CSULB from accessing revenue generated from CCPE tuition fees.
The only way CSULB may benefit from the expansion of the college is by charging a “ground lease rent,” which although may be an idea for the future, is not something the school plans on implementing any time soon, Conoley said.
Along with being self-sustainable and a producer of its own renewable energy, the building will also be certified by the U.S. Green Building Council, which specializes in developing buildings requiring the consumption of less energy, water and greenhouse gases.
Joshee said that in order to show the community the positive impact of the building’s architectural design, environmental policy students will be asked to conduct a case study on the sustainability of the new building.
According to Joshee, students who are not a part of CCPE, as well as school officials and faculty will be encouraged to use the buildings resources, as the conference center which has a 300 person capacity limit and 20 general classrooms will be available for other departments to use either during summer sessions or when not reserved by the college.
“Everybody will benefit from this building,” Conoley said. “The CCPE building will add to the classroom capacity and to the beauty of the campus.”