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Jan. 30, 2013
CONTACT: K.E. Schwab

Smith Student Center in The Bulletin magazine spotlight

Slippery Rock University’s new Robert M. Smith Student Center is among new student centers across the nation selected to be featured in the January renovation and construction issue of the Association of College Unions International magazine, The Bulletin. Christopher Cole, center director, worked with offices across campus to compile the entry packet.

"The Smith Student Center has been a fantastic addition to the campus for our students. I am proud of the success of the building and pleased to share that success with colleagues in the Association of College Unions International,” Cole said.

"The 32-page magazine offers details on SRU’s Smith Student Center as well as similar student center projects at other universities across the nation, including those at Simpson College, the University of Colorado, California State University, Colorado State University, Oklahoma State University, Vanderbilt University, the University of South Carolina and the University of St. Thomas.

The article provides facts about the three-story building and its impact on campus including:

· Total area: 106,869 sq. ft.;

· Assignable space: 59 percent;

· Project Cost: $39 million;

· Funding source: 85 percent student fees; 15 percent bookstore contribution;

· Architects: Sasaki Associates – Boston; DRS Architects Inc. – Pittsburgh.

“Once the project was approved, the design architects led numerous workshops and programming meetings with students, faculty and staff to assess the needs of the campus and to design a facility that would meet those needs,” Cole said.

The Robert M. Smith Student Center opened July 18, 2012. A retail zone on the first floor has a bookstore, technology center, Starbucks, bank and information desk. The second floor acts as a “living room” with lounge spaces, a commuter pantry with lockers, student organization offices and a food court, as well as the student development offices and resource rooms. A ballroom, meeting rooms and theater create a “campus meeting place” on the third floor.

SRU is working to have the building LEED Silver certified. Sustainable construction features included building on existing campus space, sourcing materials from local vendors and recycling construction waste. Additionally, energy efficient systems were installed throughout the building, a locker room and showers encourage staff to seek alternative transportation (such as biking), and a green roof was installed.

The magazine’s full edition is available at:

Slippery Rock University is Pennsylvania's premier public residential university. Slippery Rock University provides students with a comprehensive learning experience that intentionally combines academic instruction with enhanced educational and learning opportunities that make a positive difference in their lives.