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Jubilation Marks College of Humanities and Behavioral Sciences’ Ribbon Cutting
By Austin Martin
After years of preparation and months of construction, Radford University unveiled its newest and largest building during an outdoor ceremony on campus on Sept. 16, 2016.
“I like to call it 143,000 square feet of fabulous,” said Dr. Katherine Hawkins, Dean of the College of Humanities and Behavioral Sciences, in her opening speech as she greeted various members of the Radford community including former members of the Board of Visitors, the Radford City School Superintendent, and a representative from Vice-Presidential candidate Tim Kaine’s office. Excitement and a sense of relief were common themes as she spoke to the crowd.
“It’s evocative of strong emotion and gratitude,” she said as she described the five years it took to plan and build the new building which was completed in August, “I am glad to finally assist in delivering this to the Radford University community.”
Dr. Carter Turner began his speech with a quote from Winston Churchill.
“We shape our buildings and thereafter they shape us.”
He spoke of all of the new technology that this building holds including large LED display screens in the lobby, large new projection screens in every classroom, as well as Mac labs and PC labs for students to use. He thanked Ed Oakes, Associate Vice President of the Division of Information Technology for bringing the building to life and to the 21st century.
“This building helps us do our job better, so we can serve our students better,” said Turner. He closed his speech with a “hallelujah” and a welcome home to all of the students and staff who will spend countless hours in the new facility.
Dr. Brian Hemphill, newly appointed president of Radford University, said that the building finally matched what he knows that the college is, “top notch” and will open up new opportunities for students. Hemphill also made special note of all of the hard work of his predecessor, former Radford President Penelope Kyle. He thanked her for time spent ensuring the building’s completion before her retirement over the summer.
The ceremony closed with a ribbon cutting including Dr. Hawkins, Dr. Hemphill, Dr. Turner, representatives of the Radford University Board of Visitors, and representatives of S.B. Ballard Construction Company, which completed the project.