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Immaculata University Dedicates New Building for Students

Published Friday, February 8, 2019 9:00 am

On Thursday, Jan. 24, the campus community gathered to dedicate and bless the new IHM Student Center, which officially opened to students on that day.

Julia Coppa ’19, of Birdsboro, Pa., president of Immaculata’s Student Government Association, supplied the welcome and introduction while Marilyn Benvenuto ’19, of Reading, Pa., sang the alma mater. Father Kevin McCabe, chaplain at Immaculata, blessed the new Student Center after remarks by Barbara Lettiere ’72, president of Immaculata, and Sister Mary Ellen Tennity, IHM, general superior of the Sisters, Servants of the Immaculate Heart of Mary.

“When we broke ground last spring, I was excited to begin building our newest addition to campus,” said Lettiere. “This new facility will provide our deserving students a place to be together and to enjoy each other’s company. We are very grateful to the IHM Congregation for their encouragement and support. The new Student Center is a tribute to their almost 100 years of service and dedication to Immaculata. Many of our alumni contributed to the funding for this building. It has been a long time coming, but it was certainly worth the wait!”

Designed by nationally renowned architectural firm Crabtree, Rohrbaugh & Associates, the three-story, 11,000 square-foot building provides students a modern hub for relaxation, recreation and socialization. The 20-foot-high lounge area features a dramatic floor-to-ceiling stone fireplace housed within a postmodern, soft-industrial motif.

Amenities include a fully equipped fitness center overlooking the fireplace and lounge, featuring 34 exercise stations that utilize modern fitness equipment enhanced by personal technology options. A game room offers two gaming stations, a 16-foot shuffleboard, ping-pong table and pool table. Students will have the opportunity to host movie nights, theatrical performances and other activities in a multi-purpose room that is equipped with new generation technology. For dining options, students can choose from prepared meals provided by IU’s dining partner, Parkhurst; a snack bar featuring an open grill; and a self-service counter for beverages and milkshakes. As part of an energy conservation focus, the building employs hydraulic elevators, a highly efficient heat pump system, LED lighting and occupancy sensors.

The campus community celebrated the ribbon-cutting and dedication of the new building with cake, soft pretzels and a T-shirt giveaway.

“This IHM Student Center has the hallmark of community written all over it,” Sister Mary Ellen commented. “It has been designed specifically to foster the growth of community. It is in community where we discover the capacity, our own capacity, for goodness, and where we equally discover and appreciate one another’s capacity for goodness.”

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