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President’s Page

A Campus Transformed By Joel Seligman
presidentCELEBRATING SUCCESS: In marking the success of The Meliora Challenge, Seligman thanked campaign leaders, trustees, alumni, friends, and other supporters for their commitment to the University. (Photo: Adam Fenster)

This year’s Meliora Weekend was a spectacular celebration. We had an opportunity to reflect on how far we have come in the 11 years of The Meliora Challenge Campaign which concluded in June.

Visitors to our campus had a chance to see firsthand the University’s transformation. The summer of 2016 was one of the most active construction periods in our history. Our campaign leaders, including alumni, friends, and supporters, have spurred dramatic changes. They have used their passion and generosity to help the University navigate a course to the Next Level.

I am grateful to several leaders of our Board of Trustees who have helped to shape the academic and physical plant of our campus. Trustees Danny Wegman, Bob Goergen ’60, Ed Hajim ’59, and Evans Lam ’83, ’84S (MBA) are responsible for recent transformative projects that we celebrated during Meliora Weekend. There was much more.

Wegmans Hall was dedicated on October 6 during our board meeting and is scheduled for full occupancy in the winter of 2017. The new state-of-the-art, 50,000-square-foot building will house the Goergen Institute for Data Science as well as the Department of Computer Science and other academic areas. The building will provide much-needed space for collaborative research, conferences, workshops, and special events.

The Edmund A. Hajim Science & Engineering Quadrangle, which includes the Robert B. Goergen Hall for Biomedical Engineering and Optics, Hylan Hall, Hutchison Hall, the Computer Studies Building, and Wegmans Hall, was dedicated on October 7. The new quadrangle will bring vibrancy to the River Campus, offering additional green space and social areas for events and activities.

Evans Lam Square is now open, substantially modernizing the first floor of Rush Rhees Library just off the Roger B. Friedlander Lobby. We dedicated the new space on October 5. Lam Square has transformed the look of the library into a space that will function much like a town square, serving as the central location for library users to do research, collaborate on projects, and explore new technologies. A “technology sandbox” now serves as an open space for exploring cutting-edge tools that can be used in coursework. Evans Lam Square is also the central location for the library’s Q&i service, which provides circulation and basic research support.

On the second floor in Rush Rhees Library, we will soon complete a new 8,500-square-foot Humanities Center space, which will feature lounge and conference space, offices, and a seminar room.

The Frederick Douglass Building has been transformed into a new student common space. The four-story building has opened a reinvented dining facility, redesigned student gathering spaces, the Paul J. Burgett Intercultural Center, and the new Language Center.

A renovation and expansion of the press box in Fauver Stadium and a refurbishment of the concourse was completed in early October. Construction began during the summer on a new 72,000-square-foot residence hall overlooking the University’s Brian F. Prince Athletic Complex, due to open next fall. The finished building will feature four residential floors to house approximately 150 new beds, meeting rooms for study groups and workshops, a new locker room facility, and training rooms for our athletic programs. Parts of Schlegel and Gleason Halls in the Simon Business School were renovated this summer, adding new office space and updated classroom spaces.

At the Eastman School of Music, the year began with a refurbished Kilbourn Hall, with new carpeting, seats, aisle lighting, and handrails.

Phase II construction of the new Golisano Children’s Hospital building has begun and will feature six additional operating rooms, the Clay E. and Rita M. Buzzard Pediatric Cardiac Cath Lab Suite, and 23 new private pre-op and post-op recovery rooms. Construction is scheduled to be completed in 2017.

Construction also continues on a new 90,000-square-foot, state-of-the-art building for imaging sciences and complex pediatric care on East River Road to provide the region’s first outpatient interventional radiology clinic and the region’s first standalone clinic for the integrated care of autism, the William and Mildred Levine Autism Clinic.

I am grateful to many other trustees and friends for their vision, their counsel, their guidance, and their confidence in the ability of this University to always strive to be ever better. Our achievements together are a result of always aiming higher. Now, onward, to the Next Level.