The new Arts and Education Building adds depth to IU South Bend
By CECELIA ROEDER
A professor was once hired at IU South Bend and told “don’t get comfortable in Greenlawn,” as the building was slated for demolition. The year? 1975.
38 years later, the plans to create a new space on campus have become a reality.
The newly refurbished Education and Arts building was dedicated on April 17 with much flair and ado. The IU South Bend wind ensemble played for distinguished participants including IU President Michael McRobbie, Representative B. Pat Bauer, former Senator Robert Meeks, Honoree and retiring Chancellor Una Mae Reck and a plethora of other contributors, faculty, students and contributors.
The 129,000 square foot structure was originally a giant red brick building known as the Associates Building. Facing away from campus and generally agreed upon as an eyesore, the building was described as a thorn in Reck’s side. Reck said the building would “taunt her” in years past, and proudly proclaimed “the taunting is over.”
The new building now has a flowing limestone and glass exterior facing the heart of campus. Students will now have access to a building that will soon host three 24-hour computer labs, a photography lab, a lecture hall, the Dental Hygiene clinic, the School of Education and the School of the Arts. The university estimates that nearly 2,000 students will use the building regularly.
The dedication also doubled as an official recognition of Chancellor Reck, who is retiring in June.
Other participants and speakers described the Arts and Education building as her magnum opus. Her other projects while chancellor have included the construction of IUSB’s iconic red bridge, the addition of student housing, expansion to the Elkhart campus and a new parking lot on the west side of campus.
Bauer proclaimed that it was “a fabulous day for a fabulous event,” despite a delay by thunderstorms, causing all attendees to wait inside until the weather cleared.
The unexpected delay allowed guests an opportunity to view the new building up close and preview some of the banquet that was to follow the dedication. Dining services rolled out the carpet for the event. A cake with an image of the new building in the frosting was the pinnacle of the desert table, while giant bowls of shrimp cocktails and other morsels called from across the room.
The storm even helped show off the gadgets within the building, as guests were kept updated on the situation with the new sound system.
The new Education and Arts building’s unveiling was a preview to the possibilities that will be fully realized when it becomes fully functional in the fall semester.