Friday, October 11, 2002
OU to celebrate ED Building grand opening
Oakland University will celebrate the grand opening of the Education and Human Services Building Friday, Oct. 18, at 3 p.m. with remarks by various speakers including School of Education and Human Services Dean Mary Otto and OU President Gary Russi. State Representative Michael Bishop, District 45, will give a special tribute in recognition of the new facility. Building tours and a reception will follow the grand opening festivities.
Formerly housed in 28,000-square-feet of space in O’Dowd Hall, students and faculty in the School of Education and Human Services experienced a tremendous gain in space and amenities when they moved in mid-August into the new, four-story, 132,000-square-foot Education and Human Services Building located east of Varner Hall.
“The addition of this building is a wonderful enhancement that will bring countless learning opportunities to our students,” said Otto. “The expanded classroom and laboratory space, technology tools, counseling rooms, resource library and addition of the Lowry Early Childhood Education Center enable us, more than ever, to deliver a distinctive, high quality education to our students.”
Long located in what once served as chicken coops for Meadow Brook Farm, the nationally accredited Lowry Center occupies the lowest level of the building. Features include six toddler and pre-school classrooms, offices, a kitchen, teacher workroom and reception areas as well as tight security. Behind the center, a series of three playscapes offer climbing equipment, slides and swings.
Designed by J.M. Olson Corporation of St. Clair Shores, the $31.5 million building was designed to fit into the contour of the land and features a V-shaped atrium and glass front on the east side. The grand centerpiece, a wide-open multipurpose room, fills the building’s atrium and rises 75 feet. Offering views from above of children playing on a climbing structure and tunnel system, the space will serve as a constant reminder to education majors of why they went into the field.
The new Education and Human Services Building is the fifth student facility to open on Oakland’s campus since 1995. The other buildings include Elliott Hall, completed in 2000; Recreation and Athletics Center, which opened in 1998; Science and Engineering Building, dedicated in 1997; and the University Student Apartments, completed in 2002.