Spring classes start at SF State today; Science building classes relocated

January 27, 2014 -- San Francisco State University’s 30,000 students return to campus today minus one building to serve academic needs. More than 9,000 enrollments were relocated to alternate rooms when the presence of asbestos, lead and other environmental hazards required closure of the University’s Science building for the semester.

The Science building had housed lab courses, classrooms and large lecture halls, in addition to faculty and staff offices. Approximately 7,000 student enrollments were originally scheduled in the building’s three large lecture halls. About 2,000 enrollments were scheduled in labs and classrooms. These classes have been moved to alternate locations. 

"We owe a debt of gratitude to the hundreds of faculty, staff and administrators who worked day and night to make the relocations possible," said SF State President Les Wong. "This is remarkable achievement. There’s still much work to do, but we are on a steady path toward ensuring students' progress is not interrupted."

Classes have been moved to large conference rooms, computer labs, classrooms in other buildings, and to Chemistry and Engineering labs in other facilities. It is expected that some classes will likely be moved again later in the semester, as trailers on campus are retrofitted to accommodate Chemistry and Engineering lab sections.

SF State relocated all classes and labs with minimal changes to scheduling, with only two exceptions. One intensive lab class for Clinical Laboratory Science will be held at University of California, San Francisco (UCSF) for half the semester, until work can be completed on appropriate on-campus facilities. Two sections of an engineering lab (ENGR 411) have been cancelled. The two classes combined had 30 students registered. Engineering 411 is a 1-unit course that is not required for graduation in the Engineering major.

Environmental work is expected to continue in the Science building throughout the spring semester. Additional tests and evaluations are under way to determine the degree to which the hazardous materials might have impacted student or employee health. SF State will share information that may be helpful to students, employees and medical professionals as it is received.  


SF State is the only master's-level public university serving the counties of San Francisco, San Mateo and Marin. The University enrolls nearly 30,000 students each year and offers nationally acclaimed programs in a range of fields -- from creative writing, cinema and biology to history, broadcast and electronic communication arts, theatre arts and ethnic studies. The University’s more than 219,000 graduates have contributed to the economic, cultural and civic fabric of San Francisco and beyond.