PLEASANTON, Calif.—Simpson Strong- Tie contributed to the recent groundbreaking of Cal Poly’s Center for Construction Excellence, the new home for Cal Poly’s College of Architecture and Environmental Design in San Luis Obispo. Simpson, a long-time supporter of the college and its curriculum, donated $500,000 to fund the Simpson Strong-Tie Materials Demonstration Lab. The two-story structure will prepare future design professionals and construction managers, and will help support handson learning and provide interdisciplinary training by focusing on the entire building process from planning and design to engineering and construction.

"We believe the new lab will add a realworld element to the curriculum, which will give students an advantage as they enter the job market," said Dave Bastian, branch manager for Simpson Strong-Tie’s Brea facility.

Simpson’s Southern California manufacturing and sales facility in Brea has been involved with course instruction and training sessions for Cal Poly students and alumni for many years.

"Contributing to academic projects like this helps advance learning and supports our overall goal of finding new ways to build stronger, safer, and more costeffective structures," said Bastian.

The demonstration lab is just one division of Cal Poly’s new, state-of-theart facility. The 58,000-square-foot building will also accommodate lecture space, additional labs, classrooms, and offices. Completion of Cal Poly’s Center for Construction Excellence is expected during the summer of 2008.