A new Westlake Hall has been a dream for many years. The finished product was worth the wait!
As you will see in this edition of Bradley Hilltopics — and I hope in a visit soon to campus — the totally renovated and greatly expanded Westlake is spectacular. From the cutting-edge classrooms to the bamboo plants in the atrium to the restored clock tower and its new, bright clock face, the reborn Westlake takes the best of the structure’s historic architecture and combines it with the most modern teaching technology.
Westlake is designed to facilitate engaged and project-based learning that emphasizes the kind of collaboration our students require and employers desire. In the few weeks since fall semester began, students have embraced the welcoming study areas, the warm atrium amphitheater, and the state-of-the-art teaching and counseling labs that will prepare them for the future. Westlake was designed and built to serve faculty, staff and students in the College of Education and Health Sciences and the Institute for Principled Leadership in Public Service for years to come.
I am delighted that the new Turner School of Entrepreneurship and Innovation, the first stand-alone school of its type in the nation, is also housed in Westlake Hall, thanks to the continued generosity of BOB TURNER ’77 MBA ’78 and his wife, Carolyn. This fall, we welcomed our first class of students from all disciplines to develop their entrepreneurial and innovative skills in their distinct fields of study.
I am particularly proud that while restoring Westlake we retained our heritage. The original limestone rear walls and copper gutters are now in the atrium and, combined with a barrel ceiling and Gothic architectural trim, they provide a historic link to Horology Hall. Furthermore, the stately wood front doors lead to the same steps and metal banister that Lydia Moss Bradley used when she opened the building in 1897.
I invite you to return for the rededication of Westlake Hall on October 12, during Homecoming Week. You will have the opportunity to tour Westlake, visit with faculty members and reflect on how the original building served the University for so long and so well ... even though it was just 40 feet wide.
With the crowning academic jewel in the Campaign for a Bradley Renaissance complete, there is much to do and see during our Homecoming festivities. I hope you will return to the Hilltop to rekindle memories and friendships, attend Founder’s Day, witness the unveiling of a statue honoring Coach A.J. Robertson, cheer on our volleyball team and our nationally ranked soccer team, and support our men’s and women’s basketball teams at the Red & White scrimmages. Homecoming begins October 10 with the lighting of the “B” atop Bradley Hall. I look forward to welcoming you home to the Hilltop.
Thank you for all you do for our beloved University.