Lehman Library/Learning Center Ribbon Cutting 9/12/09

Welcome, good morning and thank you for being here. For those of you who think 9:45 a.m. is early, I recommend you go inside and grab a cup of Starbucks coffee to help you wake up.

When you talk about education, one of the most important facilities that is central to teaching and learning is the library. They have not only been repositories of knowledge but also a place to gather and discuss.

That has been true of Ezra Lehman Memorial Library since it was built in 1967 and since then the library has continually updated and modernized to meet the ever-changing needs of our students and faculty. Today, we are here to celebrate yet another important change in what is at the heart of the university.

This project has not only totally revamped the first floor of the facility; it has made it into an outstanding learning facility that attracts students from early in the morning to late into the night.

The main focus of the project was to fix a number of deferred maintenance issues and to enhance the first floor plan to make it more accommodating and more useful.

The familiar “Ask Us Anything” desk remains on the first floor, but the revised space is now more open and more inviting for collaborative projects. Other changes include a new library classroom and instruction labs, a conference room, offices, an art gallery, research and study areas, and six group study rooms for students.

One of the most significant changes is relocation of the Learning Center to the main floor. Students who need support from the Center can now simply come to the library where they will receive help not only from Learning Center staff and volunteers, but will receive additional support from library personnel. It was a move that was long overdue, and will have long-term benefits for students.

As you may expect, a lot of the work is behind the walls, in the ceiling and in other out-of-the-way locations. It included work on the HVAC system, replacement of duct work, and modernization of the telecommunication systems. We’ve also taken a number of steps to make it more emergency efficient, including installing occupancy sensors that will automatically turn off lights when these spaces are not in use.

The total cost of the project was nearly $1.5 million and I want to thank general contractor Palmer Construction, mechanical contractor Frey Lutz, plumbing contractor Garden Spot Mechanical, electrical contractor Lobar Inc. and designer STV Architects for their wonderful work.

Thank you again for being here and please enjoy the rest of the day.


The President:
Office of the President: