A Dayton-area school recently dedicated its newly renovated building, proudly showing off a symbol of what figures to be a bright future. Local dignitaries, project partners, and students and faculty of the Dayton STEM School in Kettering attended a ceremony which outlined the dedication and teamwork used to execute the $4.3 renovation of their school. And that renovation process was quite a feat. Thanks to collaboration between the school, Messer and SHP Leading Design, the span of time from the first designs to closing out the build was only seven months, concluding just before the start of school in August.

The school, which previously occupied a portion of a vacant department store, now includes a new 4,500-square foot fitness room, engineering laboratories, science laboratories, a wind tunnel and a three-dimensional printer. Lean Construction tools were used during the renovation to ensure the completion date was met.

The school’s S.T.E.M. acronym stands for Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics, the four focal points of the school’s curriculum. The Dayton STEM School includes a junior high and high school and features a unique, open learning environment – most classrooms are separated only by partitions, and do not include ceilings or doors.

A study by the U.S. Department of Commerce shows that from 2000 to 2010, growth in STEM jobs was three times as fast as growth in non-STEM jobs. The study also showed that in 2010, about one in every 18 jobs in the U.S. was in a STEM field. Additionally, STEM workers earned about 26 percent more than their non-STEM counterparts.