This June, Irvine’s Arnold Beckman High School marked its tenth anniversary by beginning construction on a new Humanities building.
The new appendage will house 15 rooms for English, history, and language classes. The new building, which will cost an estimated $17 million to construct, is projected to be completed in fall of 2015. Designed by Rachlin Partners and to be constructed by Balfour Beatty, the completed structure will include a courtyard, restrooms, and storage space.
New additions to the campus were a necessity due to the school’s ever-increasing student population. The past school year saw the largest Beckman population to date: 2,506 students. With so many students, the original campus, shaped like a gigantic circle, seemed filled to the point of almost bursting.
Beckman junior Melinda Nguyen commented, “Every passing period or snack and lunch would always be so hectic. There are so many students that it always feels like a stampede of animals and it is truthfully very easy to get squeezed in between the door frames by the onslaught of people coming and going.”
As a part of a mission to improve Beckman’s facilities, Principal Adele Heuer announced that, “The expansion of the humanities section of the school is the final part of the school’s master plan.”
When the school first opened in 2004, there were around 950 freshman and sophomores to first walk Beckman’s yet-unfinished campus. Since that very first year, Beckman has grown into an award-winning school and is recognized as one of the Tustin Unified School District’s academically and technologically advanced schools.
“[The new building will] provide Beckman with a new location for teachers to hold their Wednesday meetings and establish Beckman as the TUSD’s center of technological innovation and advancement,” said rising senior David Han. “Not only that, it’ll provide students with more classrooms and something else to be proud about along with the clock tower.”
Associated Student Body President (ASB) Brian Hamada shared his thoughts during the opening ceremony of the construction site, telling students, faculty, and district officials that when he visits the school in 2015, he knows it will be a different but better place.
With the symbolic first pile of dirt turned over by members of the ASB, the past ten years of Beckman turned a new face to invite change and to welcome a brighter future.