ST. CLOUD - The St. Cloud State University School of Public Affairs hosted an open house on Thursday to celebrate the opening of their new research institute.

The institute will host collaborative research by students and faculty and will provide access to research resources and expertise.

The institute will also integrate university research already in place, including the Center for Economic Education, Minnesota Economic Development Center, SCSU Survey, the St. Cloud Quarterly Business Report, the Spatial Analysis Research Center and the Winter Institute conference.

Walid Issa is an economics graduate assistant at St. Cloud State, he says the research instutite will help connect the school with the community.

Issa adds that the research institute has already started several projects.

SCSU economics professor King Banaian will serve as director. The institute is located in Stewart Hall room 329.