The dedication for the phase one of the Business and Engineering Convergence Center took place yesterday afternoon, as students, faculty and community members crowded into the atrium of the new building.
Vice chairperson of Bradley’s Board of Trustees, James Shadid, university president Gary Roberts, dean of the Caterpillar College of Engineering and Technology Lex Akers, interim dean of the Foster College of Business Matt O’Brien and Naydeen Musaitif, a student representative, spoke at the event.
“We may be a little behind schedule, we may not have everyone moved in and we may have not had the place and shape we hoped for today, but I think it looks pretty darn good,” Shadid said. “The plain fact is that we’re here, and our vision is taking shape … once a concept, now reality”
Even though the building is still not yet open to the public, as crews continue the final touches. Roberts said he hopes to see the building fully utilized in the next few weeks.
“[The building] will provide the emphasis of teaching and learning techniques, cutting edge research, and classroom collaborations for industry and community partners that will enable these two great colleges to lead the way as the ground continues to shift rapidly in higher education,” Roberts said.
Akres pointed out the “strategically placed design” that emphasized innovation collaboration in the 270,000-square-foot building. A digital stock market ticker display real-time changes in the atrium of the building. Classroom walls in the building are transparent glass.
At the ceremony, President Roberts announced that a bust of Bradley former provost and longtime economic professor, Kalman Goldberg, and a painted portrait of Martin “Jerry” Abegg, the university’s seventh president and former dean of the engineering college, will be permanently displayed in the new building.
Many students attend the event and used the opportunity to check out the inside of this newest addition to the campus.
Junior manufacturing engineering major Thomas Tomkiewicz said he believes the new building was worth his temporarily relocated classes in Morgan Hall.
“Manufacturing engineering deals a lot with both the business and engineering side of things, You’re making decisions that can save companies millions and millions of dollars, just like I did during my past internship,” Tomkiewicz said. “So it’s really cool not just in classes but outside to meet with business majors, form friendships that way.”