The finishing touches for the newly remodeled Robert B. Daugherty Student Engagement Center are being completed as the semester finishes up, with a move-in and opening planned for this summer. This comes after a year-long renovation aimed at creating a place for “pathway development,” as President Travis Feezell told the Collegian last year. Admissions, Student Life and Student Engagement will all be housed in the Daugherty Center, along with individual meeting rooms and larger conference rooms.
There will be a dedication for the building on Sept. 13, which falls on Founders’ Day. This makes it “a nice opportunity to celebrate the institution as well as new spaces that we have here on campus,” according to Matt Fong, associate vice president of external relations.
In order to be fully completed, the Daugherty Center still needs the additions of a patio and landscaping on the east side of the building and a resolution to drainage issues. According to Fong, the Daugherty Center has always dealt with flooding due to heavy rain since the creation of the building. During the course of the renovation, the drainage issues returned with this year’s wet spring. Because of this, HC is working with contractors to make sure that doesn’t continue.
The original plan included moving teams into the Daugherty Center before the end of this school year, but that has been delayed due to the final renovations. The delay in moving was decided after realizing the switch would happen during the final weeks of the semester, which is a busy time for campus.
This allows the Admissions, Student Life, and Student Engagement teams to focus on the students still on campus and get through major events such as commencement.
“It will be just like the teams will have always been here. Everybody will be full speed ahead in this building (in the fall),” Fong said.
The Daugherty Foundation, located in Omaha, was a major contributor to the original building of the Daugherty Center. As the Daugherty Center undergoes renovation, the Daugherty Foundation was again the lead benefactor, along with “alumni and friends,” according to Fong. The first floor is named after Gary ‘59 and Patsy Robinson, who funded and sponsored the admissions and welcome suite. Gary Robinson passed away at the end of 2017.
To fit with the remodeling of the Daugherty Center, the location of reserved parking spots for visiting students will also shift to be closer to the Daughtery Center. This means that some of the current reserved spots will be general parking, while parking on the south curve of the circle drive will be switched to visiting students only.