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New Projects at University of Silesia
October 1, 2010   
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Two new projects are under way at the University of Silesia in southern Poland. These are the Silesian Intercollegiate Center for Education and Interdisciplinary Research and the Center of Scientific Information and Academic Library. Both projects are partially financed by the European Union as part of its structural funds.

The Silesian Intercollegiate Center for Interdisciplinary Research and Education, under development in the city of Chorzów, will be an innovative center for interdisciplinary education operating as part of the University of Silesia. According to the university, the center will offer a number of new courses and majors modeled after those available from leading universities around the world.

One of the primary objectives of the Silesian Intercollegiate Center for Interdisciplinary Research and Education is to improve the quality of education and increase the number of students majoring in areas of key importance to the country’s economic development. This goal is expected to be achieved by providing students with better access to state-of-the-art laboratory equipment. Once completed, the project will result in the establishment of 52 new workstations at laboratories dealing with X-rays, electron microscopy, Raman spectroscopy, infrared rays, photoelectron spectroscopy and research on magnetic and electric properties. The center will house laboratories for medical physics and chemical synthesis as well as specialized biology labs with high-end apparatus.

The Silesian Intercollegiate Center for Interdisciplinary Research and Education will include a special division to analyze the labor market and demand for specialists in individual fields of expertise. The center will work with businesses at different levels, providing a system of internships for students who will thus be able to supplement their theoretical knowledge with practical experience.

The University of Silesia’s partners in the project include the Silesia University of Technology, the Medical University of Silesia, the Central Mining Institute, and the Oncology Center in Katowice.

Speaking volumes

The Center of Scientific Information and Academic Library, under construction in Katowice, is a joint project by the University of Silesia and the University of Economics in Katowice. Designed as a modern scientific library, it will serve as a comprehensive source of information for the academic community as well as the general public.

The new library will be housed in a six-story building with three floors open to users. It will hold almost 2 million volumes for free access as well as storage rooms. Construction is nearing completion on the top floor of the building’s lower section, which will house staff rooms and compact storage rooms for unconventional and protected collections. This part of the building will also contain reading rooms, conference rooms, classrooms and exhibition floors.

The new library will combine tradition with innovation as a place to collect, store and lend traditional printed publications along with databases, audiovisual material and multimedia content. A large part of the resources will be available online. Importantly, users will be able to use books through open access, order books remotely, borrow books without assistance and obtain unpaid access to professional, electronic resources of scientific, cultural, economic and business information.

The new library is scheduled to open in October next year.
Ewa Dereń
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