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October 28, 2013
CONTACT: K.E. Schwab

SRU’s Smith Student Center wins design honor

The Pittsburgh chapter of the American Institute of Architects has cited DRS Architects with Sasaki Associates for their design of the Robert M. Smith Student Center.

A Pittsburgh-Post Gazette story reported, “Jurors praised the ‘elegant facades, which were skillfully composed.’ The building's exterior ‘functions as an invitation to the spaces and activities inside. Interior spaces are flexible and adjust to a variety of uses.’”

The official ribbon-cutting for $39-million Smith Student Center occurred at homecoming 2012, following the building’s July opening. Ground was broken for the facility Oct. 1, 2010. SRU students voted online in 2005 and 2008 referendums to build the facility.

The 106,869-square-foot center includes large glass walls, a movie theatre with surround sound, a divisible ballroom, a green roof, and student offices and meeting rooms. It is also the home of the SGA Bookstore, a Quaker Steak & Lube restaurant, Rocky’s food court and a Starbucks.

This year's Design Pittsburgh jury consisted of lead juror Steve Dumez, director of design at Eskew+Dumez+Ripple in New Orleans, Anne Marie Decker at Duvall Decker Architects in Jackson, Miss. and Maurice Cox, associate dean for community engagement at Tulane University in New Orleans.

For a complete list of design 2013 winners, visit:

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.