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U of O breaks ground on construction projects

April 23, 2010
By cnp
Posted in Giving

Clarksville, Ark. --- The University of the Ozarks held ground-breaking ceremonies on Friday, April 23, for a pair of construction projects --- an expansion and renovation of its student center and a new apartment-style residence hall.

More than 250 students, faculty, staff and Board of Trustee members attended the ceremonies, which were held on the first floor of the Seay Student Center. The $5.1 million price tag for the combined projects will include a 14,000-square-foot addition to the student center as well as the new 6,600-square-foot residence hall, Trustee Hall. The two projects are expected to be completed by the spring of 2011.

The funding for the projects comes from the current $40 million Promise of Excellence Campaign, which has raised more than $38 million from 3,600 donors since its inception in 2006.

“Today’s groundbreaking is possible because of the Promise of Excellence Campaign, a five-year campaign now in its final year,” said Ozarks President Dr. Rick Niece. “A broad purpose for the campaign is to improve our quality of education and, in doing so, to make life better, longer, healthier, and more fulfilling for students, as well as other members of the campus community. The two building projects officially beginning today, with this groundbreaking, perfectly exemplify the purpose of our mission and the theological traditions of our Presbyterian heritage.”

Key elements of the student center improvements include a new health and fitness center, a new community conference center and increased dining capacity for students. Trustee Hall will house 20 students and will be the final complex that will complete a four-hall quad area in the northeast section of campus.

“These projects show the amazing commitment of our donors to this campus,” said Student Government Association President Brett Wood. “They saw what was needed and they made it happen.”

James H. Cone Construction of Little Rock will serve as the general contractor for the two projects. The lead architect was Ken Emanuelson of JKJ Architects in Rogers.

View photos from the ground-breaking ceremony

Download a zip file of images from the ceremony (50.1 MB)


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University of the Ozarks held ground-breaking ceremonies on April 23 for the expansion and renovation of the Seay Student Center and the construction of a new residence hall, Trustee Hall. Among those taking part in the ceremonies were (pictured, from left) Jack and Dorothy Nance, representing the Rogers Family Foundation; U of O First Lady Sheree Niece; U of O President Dr. Rick Niece; Judy Borck, immediate past chair of the Board of Trustees, David Rawhouser, chair of the Board of Trustees; Jim Bruning and Arvid Bean, co-chairs of the Promise of Excellence capital campaign; Brett Wood, president of the Student Government Association; and the Rev. Jerry Rice, president of the Alumni Association. Construction on the $5.1-million projects is expected to be completed by spring 2011.

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Ozarks students in attendance at the groundbreaking ceremony also had the opportunity to show their support for the upcoming construction project.