Faith and Work
Student Center &
Global Service Learning
Ask any alumnus to share a story of something memorable that happened to them while they attended LeTourneau. The story you will likely hear involves the roommates on a particular floor of a residential hall or the night their intramural team won the championship game on the soccer field and celebrated at The Hive snack bar afterwards. Perhaps the story will be about a particular classroom where they learned how to give a speech or where they first heard about Christ in such a way that He became real to them. All the stories will involve buildings and spaces. Buildings and spaces allow people to come together. They support the development of the campus community and the creation of lifelong, God-honoring friendships. The buildings and spaces lay the foundation for everything else that occurs on a residential campus.
Students are what we are about at LeTourneau University. Continuing our mission of Every Workplace, Every Nation, One Student at a Time, LETU requires something new, something essential— the University’s first real student center— a multi-story $14 million dollar facility located in the heart of the mall area of the campus. The site of this new student center facility is located in the high-traffic center of campus life on the site of the recently-demolished Skipper Hall and near the Margaret Estes Library. This signature building will transform our physical campus and ensure that we continue to attract high caliber students; more importantly, it will also create a space where the entire Yellowjacket community can gather to learn and thrive and grow— both academically and spiritually. As a hub for LeTourneau University, the new student center will have community space for student study, lounge space, meeting rooms, campus bookstore, coffee shop and express food service to supplement the main dining hall. The center will also provide a “one-stop” student service center for business, financial aid and enrollment tasks; various student services including health, counseling and career services; administrative space for the admissions and student affairs offices; and executive space to bring the president, provost and administrative offices together. A true center for university life, it will fill a critical need by providing nearly 60,000 square feet in a well-designed space that serves as a dynamic hub of activity for the LeTourneau community.
Facilities DO matter. Everyone knows that education isn’t just limited to classroom time. Active learning happens around the clock— 24/7 in late night study sessions and group meetings for projects. Leadership skills, spiritual growth and academic excellence are achieved by providing a positive learning environment that enriches the overall experience of all LETU students.
As LETU’s student population continues to grow, student facilities need to be expanded to provide for our students this decade and beyond. When completed, the new student center will ensure the University continues to attract and graduate students who meet the rising standards for admission and the high expectations of LeTourneau University. LETU remains so convinced the time is right to invest in a facility of this size that it is providing $7 million toward the $14 million total project cost.
- • Multipurpose meeting space for student organizations
- • Larger campus bookstore
- • Complete wireless capabilities
- • Dedicated study areas and suites
- • Prayer room
The new student center will also provide space for:
- • Alumni office and Student Career Services
- • Student Affairs staff
- • Admissions office
- • Executive offices
Today, nearly 100 percent of freshmen live on campus in “traditional” housing. Whether providing student leadership, peer tutoring, participating in aviation or engineering competitions, or global mission trips, LETU students perform amazingly well in a compact campus environment, often making do in outdated, crowded facilities.
Just imagine the possibilities of providing ample, modern space, wired for new technology and designed to encourage a collaborative and interactive environment designed to promote creativity and academic and spiritual growth among the students on campus.
Features of the new facility include:
- • Space for student organizations and co-curricular activities
- • Multi-purpose rooms for large meetings and student gatherings
- • University bookstore
- • Conference rooms
- • Study areas
- • Coffee shop
As the core of the LeTourneau University campus, the student center will serve all students — residential, traditional, undergraduate, graduate and commuter — and will engage everyone more fully in the overall university experience.
Another critical need of the university that will benefit our students directly is the redesign of our existing athletic complex. Thanks to generous donors who answered the call during the leadership phase of the campaign, many improvements have been made to the university’s athletic facilities. Named in honor of Joe Bob and Lou Ann Joyce, the Joyce Family Athletic Village was dedicated in the spring of 2012. These important enhancements, especially involving LETU’s competition and intramural fields, perimeter fencing, new entrance and upgrades to the concession, hospitality and dressing rooms as well as parking, are absolutely essential to remain competitive and continue to build on past successes. Additional donations to the Athletic Village are needed to further underwrite the cost of this vital area of the campus that provides a significantly improved life experience for the 200+ student athletes and the vast majority of residential students who participate in intramural sports.
While the generous gifts from the leadership phase paved the way for the facility to be constructed, further gifts to this key initiative are critical and will be used to undergird and build up the university’s infrastructure. Funds given that are not required directly for the Student Center and Athletic Village will allow the university to plan for future facility needs and further improve community life experience.