SDSU Raven Precision Agriculture Heart offers college students analysis alternatives


Lena Ouandaogo is an undergrad student studying agricultural and bio-system engineering at SDSU.

She has been participating in soil health research at the Raven Precision Agriculture Center.

“There is a lot of opportunities in this department for students especially for work. There is a lot of internships that student can apply for,” Ouandaogo said.

Ouandaogo is an exchange student from Burkina Faso, a country in West Africa. She says she was very interested in agricultural studies and wanted to pursue it at SDSU.

“This opportunity helped me understand a lot of thing, like what I can do with my degree after graduation, so this is something I really really enjoy doing,” Ouandaogo said.

This lab is just one of 14 labs in the Center where students can conduct various types of AG research…

“As an international student, I really understand the importance of having access to well equipped lab,” Ouandaogo said.

Which is why these labs were built to be energy efficient.

“The labs are going to use a lot more energy and airflow, air changes per hour. You got to heat and cool that air,” said Collin Gaalswyk, Project Manager for construction of Center.

The Center recently received a silver Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design certification. Leed certifications are given to buildings that are constructed to be environmentally friendly. The Center was designed with state of the art lighting, water, airflow and energy efficiency.

“The more sustainability efforts that we can do to be more energy efficient, the more resources we save for the future as well,” Gaalswyk said.

The Center opened its doors in 2021. The 46 million dollar building has 17 instructional lab spaces, workshops, and specialty spaces for learning. Between 8 to 10 thousand students in both the Department of Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering and the Department of Agronomy, Horticulture and Plant Science share classes under the same roof.

“There are six major programs offered in this building. And there are many minor programs, certificate programs, graduate programs, masters in both PhD and Master’s level,” said Dr. Kasiviswanathan Muthukumarappan, Department Head and Distinguished Professor.

Bringing students of all academic backgrounds together in one environmentally friendly space.

“The goals and programs and teaching research that they have in this building is looking at how more sustainable agriculture can be in the future,” said Collin Gaalswyk, Project Manager for construction of Center.

“We have to communicate together and help each other to get the work done,” Ouandaogo said.

The Raven Precision Agriculture Center is just one of 16 buildings on SDSU’s campus that have received the LEED certification.


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