Fanfare along with green and white balloons filled the atrium as more than 100 students, faculty and guests inaugurated the new $14.7-million student Life Centre at King’s University College.
While the Darryl J. King Student Life Centre was six years in the making, the event also marks the 60th anniversary of King’s University College. The centre is a hybrid between a social and academic hub while offering up some cultural benefits.
“The centre is meant to provide our whole community, faculty staff and students, with a place to gather in that important space between classes,” said King’s University College Principal David Sylvester.
“We’ve grown quite a bit over the last decade, and we’ve kept up with classrooms and offices, but this is primarily a place where students can gather and talk about new ideas and meet each other,” he said.
$7.8-million of the funds were raised by the alumni and faculty while $1.2-million is expected to be raked in during the next year. The three-storey centre boasts a learning commons and writing centre, several classrooms, fitness centre, seminar rooms, a 460-seat theatre and a two-storey fireplace to top it off.
“This is a really important component for providing students with that experience — it’s not just about classrooms and lectures halls, it’s about building meaningful relationships and talking with professors and students, and this centre will be a place for that,” Sylvester said.
The centre is being touted as green-friendly and features natural lighting, green roofing, water and energy efficiencies as well as low-emitting materials.
The event was initially postponed on Tuesday, in light of the record-breaking frigid temperatures that forced Western officials to cancel classes and advise students to stay indoors.
The King Centre was named in honour to Darryl J. King, who donated a substantial amount towards the project. King graduated with a history degree from the college back in 1997 and began a lucrative transportation business soon afterwards. In an event press release, he accredited his success and philanthropy to his experience at the affiliate college.
Event planners for the King's centre capped off the afternoon with musical guest Texas King. King playing within King's at King.
— With files from Aaron Zaltzman