Orange Coast College Planetarium Gets A Big Boost

Orange Coast College is a unique and accredited school near and dear to the hearts of many. Just ask individuals like former professor Mary McChesney, who recently donated one million dollars towards the college’s brand new planetarium which began construction last year.

The hefty donation will be specifically applied to the facility’s Foucalt pendulum, which is used to demonstrate the rotation of the Earth, the first of its kind in Orange County.

McChesney, a retired English and Spanish professor, is putting forth the donation in honor of her recently deceased, long-time partner and former fellow professor Adelyn Bonin. McChesney stated to LA times, “I know Lyn would be happy to do this — this is half hers.”

While McChesney has been a long-time contributor for donations to scholarships and the school, this donation eclipses them all. The new planetarium, which will include the latest technology in the field, will contain a 129 seat auditorium, a far cry from the old planetarium’s 35 seat arrangement.

Not only will the new planetarium be an incredible resource for the students of OCC, but will act as a tool for the rest of the community as well. Once constructed it will be utilized by students ranging from kindergarten to high school, as well as other residents in the community.

The planetarium is expected to run a budget of 20 million, mostly funded by a bond from 2012 and helped along with generous donations such as Mary McChensey’s. Orange Coast College is targeting an opening in time for the 2018 fall semester. Learn more about Orange Coast College: https://www.facebook.com/orangecoastcollege/ and https://twitter.com/orangecoast?lang=en

Aside from a brand new state of the art planetarium OCC is known for a variety of aspects ranging from education to athletics. The Costa Mesa school, located just off the coast of southern California, has become one of the nations largest community colleges, enrolling nearly 25,000 students a semester.

OCC hosts one of the nations top nautical programs and transfers more students to the University of California and the California State University systems than any other Orange County community college. When it comes to athletics OCC has been downright dominant.

Orange Coast has won their conference sports supremacy award, representative of the top overall men’s and women’s athletic program, 26 of the last 30 years. Orange Coast College will look to continue its rich traditions with the help of staff and attendees past and present just like Mary McChesney.

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