Excitement and awe mark unveiling of renovation to Reed and Curie Halls
The spectacular renovation to the storied Radford University Reed and Curie Halls were officially celebrated on February 12, 2020 with a special ribbon cutting ceremony in the building’s stunning campus-side atrium.
Home to the Artis College of Science and Technology, Reed and Curie Halls have been undergoing a significant overhaul since 2017. Reed Hall was originally constructed in 1939 and renovated for the first time in 1993-95. Curie Hall was constructed in 1971.
The most recent renovation, completed in early January 2020, include 94,840 square feet of extraordinary teaching and research facilities filled with state-of-the-art equipment and furnishings at a cost of nearly $34 million. The remodeled structures complement the connecting Center for the Sciences and create an integrated and sophisticated science complex.
Unique and notable features include:
- Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) Center and Geohazards and Unmanned Systems Research Center;
- Geology Maker Lab;
- Tree Ring Lab;
- Geographic Information System (GIS) Center and Virtual Reality (VR) Lab;
- Dedicated housing for the Scanning Tunnel Microscope, an instrument that can image and manipulate materials at an atomic level;
- The Artis Cybersecurity Training and Education Lab, or Artis Cyber Lab, an isolated computer network for cybersecurity research and online defense competitions, including the RUSecure Capture the Flag contest that attracts nearly 1,500 high school students each year; and
- A renovated greenhouse with a variety of plants with a display from the Radford Amazonian Research Expedition (RARE).
Artis College of Science and Technology Dean J. Orion Rogers, Ph.D., opened the ceremony by welcoming President Brian O. Hemphill, Ph.D., and First Lady Marisela Rosas Hemphill, Ph.D., along with special guests Nancy Artis ’73 and Pat Artis, Ph.D., who are the benefactors and namesakes of the Artis College in recognition of a $5 million gift to the University in 2017 resulting in valuable scholarships for students. Also joining in the celebration were Board of Visitors (BOV) Rector Bob Archer and members Tom Brewster, M.S. ‘95, Ed.D., Rachel Fowlkes, Ed.D., and Nancy Rice, as well as student representative to the BOV, Breon Case.
“Reed and Curie Halls join the Center for the Sciences as an intellectual ecosystem for all departments in the Artis College to engage with students through inspired teaching and original research,” Rogers said. “Our students will learn science by doing science in instructional and research labs for chemistry, physics, geology, geospatial science, biology and cybersecurity while using mathematics and statistics as the language of science.”
See all the highlights from the ribbon cutting
In their remarks, the Artises expressed their excitement for the grand opening of the science complex, where more than 15 Artis Scholars are receiving a transformative education, thanks to their generous donation. Their gift will support more than 25 Artis Scholars next year.
“Having both been raised in modest surroundings where our parents were never hesitant to share what they had to help others, we view success as the good that our wealth can do to help build a future for others,” Nancy Artis said.
On behalf of the Board of Visitors, Rector Archer said: “Today celebrates the vision and hard work by many people and symbolizes what we as board members and administrators strive to accomplish on behalf of generations of students. That vision included creating enhanced opportunities for our students by providing state-of-the-art facilities for teaching and learning, stimulating innovation, offering opportunities to explore the world and making new discoveries.”
Representing the talented Artis College faculty and staff, Assistant Professor of Chemistry Sarah Kennedy, Ph.D., said that with the opening of Reed and Curie Halls, “Our students and faculty truly have the opportunity to study and perform research from the atomic level up through astronomical levels, as well as in the virtual and physical worlds.”
A recipient of the 2019 Artis Outstanding Faculty Award for Scholarship and Service, Kennedy continued, “Our faculty are dedicated to being effective and inclusive in their teaching and research. We are using this new space to facilitate active learning, project-based learning and course-based undergraduate research so that we provide impactful experiences for all of our students.”
On behalf of Artis College students, Morgan Wyatt, a physics major and a member of the 2018 inaugural class of the Artis Distinguished Scholarship Program, highlighted how the renovation will enhance collaboration and research among students and faculty and allow students to flourish in their respective classes.
“The ample space in the classrooms, along with the new technology used in classrooms and labs, will be of great service and is very much appreciated,” Wyatt said.
In closing, President Hemphill said, “I cannot wait to see the amazing discoveries that will be made by faculty and students due to this state-of-the-art learning and research environment. And, I look forward to seeing the expanded possibilities for faculty and student collaboration – a defining characteristic of a Radford education and the Highlander experience.”
Following the ceremony, guests were invited to see the renovation first-hand through self-guided tours.
Renovation to Reed and Curie Halls was guided by the Reed and Curie Renovation Committee in partnership with: architectural and engineering firm, CannonDesign; the team led by Punit Jain; the design team of Stellos Xystros; Branch & Associates; and Project Manager Jimmy Kenyon.