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New Student Centre Officially Open

UTSC's new state-of-the-art student centre

“So much of the student experience happens outside the classroom or library and it gives me great pleasure to celebrate the opening of a new focal point for UTSC student life,�? says Frank Iacobucci, interim president of the University of Toronto. Noting that the building is managed and operated entirely by the Scarborough Campus Students’ Union, Iacobucci observes, “This is the students’ centre and I know that their commitment and energy will ensure its success. I would like to congratulate everyone involved in this project.�?

“Today we celebrate not only the opening of this state-of-the-art facility but also the tireless hours our student, faculty and staff leaders have invested in ensuring its success,�? says UTSC principal Kwong-loi Shun.

With a new TTC stop at the entrance, the Student Centre also houses the Health and Wellness Centre, a piano lounge, multi-faith prayer space, meeting rooms and offices for student associations and media. In addition to new fast food franchise outlets, there is a 95-seat licensed restaurant.

“This building provides the student space that was missing,�? says Adam Watson, president of the Scarborough Campus Students’ Union. “Students are excited because it’s not just a building – it’s a building run by students for students.�? UTSC students voted in 2001 for a levy of $60 per student for the next 30 years to help fund the $14-million centre. The levy has been met by a 50 percent matching grant from the provost. In addition, a fundraising campaign by Scotiabank employees has resulted in a $100,000 donation for a student clubs centre, home to the 85 recognized student clubs on campus.

Students also had strong input in the design process, working with Toronto-based Dunlop Architects Inc. to identify their needs and priorities. The three-storey, 4,350-gross-square-metre (48,000-square-foot) building, which features a green roof, water conservation technologies and sustainable materials such as bamboo flooring, uses structural steel recycled from the Royal Ontario Museum for a significant portion of its structure.

The Student Centre opening is part of a weekend of UTSC 40th anniversary celebrations. Founded in 1964, UTSC provides undergraduate and graduate studies with a current enrolment of approximately 8,800 students, projected to increase to 10,000 by 2010. Joan Foley Hall, a new residence for 230 students and a new Academic Resource Centre were opened in 2003, and UTSC will open its new Management Building in November. Currently under construction is the Arts and Administration Building, scheduled for completion in 2005.

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