As this issue’s cover illustrates, this is one of the most exciting and change-filled semesters in Fredonia’s history, as students, faculty, and alumni have returned to see a very different campus on several fronts.
The biggest change will be seen with the much-anticipated opening of the new, 92,000-square-foot Science Center (see page 4). This state-of-the-art facility is breathtaking. It clearly changes the physical landscape of the campus, creating an appealing science quad. It will enhance the university’s historic strength in the STEM disciplines (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) and re-cast the ways many view Fredonia. It is an outstanding building, designed by internationally known Mitchell/Giurgola Architects to facilitate the collaborative, problem-based approaches to science learning. Faculty members were engaged throughout the planning, led by Associate Professor of Chemistry Holly Lawson, project shepherd. A campus team toured a dozen science buildings on other campuses to gather ideas and provide input that went into designing and equipping classrooms, laboratories, and research areas. Even those not engaged in science will appreciate the building’s overall functionality, sustainable design elements, inviting atmosphere, and spectacular views. It will serve nearly 500 students majoring in Biology, Chemistry, Biochemistry, Environmental Sciences, Molecular Biology, Medical Technology, Exercise Science, and Science Education. We hope you’ll return to tour this new academic building at its formal dedication, Friday, Oct. 17. We could think of no better way to kickoff Homecoming weekend!
To help celebrate this new facility and foster excitement for its official dedication, Bill Nye (“The Science Guy”) will be featured as the 2014-15 Maytum Convocation Series keynote speaker (see page 7). A world-renowned scientist, engineer, comedian, author, inventor, and winner of multiple Emmy Awards, Dr. Nye is an ideal speaker to frame this year’s Convocation theme, “The Joy of Discovery,” on Thursday, Sept. 18.
At the opposite end of campus, visitors will discover the new University Village, campus townhouses nestled along Ring Road. These new residence options offer upper-division students all-inclusive, furnished apartment housing — with single bedrooms, full amenities (including washers and dryers in each apartment), and the convenience, safety, and security of living on campus.
Another major construction project is now underway with the expansion and renovation of the Michael C. Rockefeller Arts Center. When completed in 2016, the addition will enhance the already outstanding instruction and performances in the College of Visual and Performing Arts. The entrance from the parking lot will be more accessible and welcoming, and instead of a solid concrete wall, visitors will be able to see an inviting array of new visual arts as well as dance studios and production areas. There will also be a much-needed connector to link Rockefeller with Mason Hall.
However, the biggest change is one you may have already seen. This summer, the university unveiled a unifying name – simply, “Fredonia” – as well as a much-needed redesign of the campus logo. The name change gives the institution a singular identity, clearing up long-running confusion between SUNY Fredonia, Fredonia State College, FSU, and previous monikers. Just as importantly, survey data and focus groups revealed that our previous identity did not resonate well with out-of-state and international audiences — two major components of the enrollment strategy. The new logo consists of an attractive, modern font that emphasizes the name Fredonia, while clearly aligning with the state university system. It also includes a creative logo mark. This symbol, inspired by Fredonia’s iconic I.M. Pei architecture, features two converging “Fs” that also form a mortarboard and tassel — the traditional cap worn at Commencement. The new logo, produced entirely in-house by Fredonia’s talented marketing and communications team and vetted through a 17-member committee, has been embraced by key stakeholders across campus. We hope you like this new identity and take as much pride in it as we do!
Dr. Virginia S. Horvath
Dr. David Fountaine, '79, '89
President, Fredonia Alumni Association