May 3, 2018
A dinner was held on May 3 to celebrate the official kick off of the Harold Walter Siebens School of Business/Siebens Forum renovation at Buena Vista University. Construction is scheduled to start later this month, with a tentative completion date of December 2018.
BVU President Joshua D. Merchant, members of the Board of Trustees, Forum donors, faculty, and Student Senate representatives all joined in on the celebration, which took place in the Dows Event Center on the BVU campus.
“First and foremost, it is important to acknowledge the vital contributions of all those who have made the Forum renovation possible and who believe in the future of BVU,” said Merchant. “Your gracious generosity ensures our students continue to have access to top-notch facilities and extraordinary educational experiences.”
The renovation will be driven by several key themes and student priorities. A more up-to-date dining experience will be introduced, providing spaces for students to eat and study for longer periods of time. Contemporary and modular seating will be added to the new dining area along with a wider variety of table groupings. An area solely-dedicated to external group meetings and conferencing space is being contemplated for the second phase of the project, as the current conference center is in the heart of the Forum but rarely used by students. A renovated retail space for the campus bookstore has also been proposed.
One of the most practical elements to be included in the renovation will be the addition of an elevator at the east entrance, providing ease of entry for BVU guests, visitors, and commuter students entering the Forum from the east parking lot. Overall, the BVU community and visitors will notice a brighter, fresher, finished appearance with enhanced natural lighting, and views of campus outside of the Forum.
Planning for the renovation kicked off in February 2017, when the BVU Board of Trustees approved a campaign to raise philanthropic resources in an effort to reinvent the Forum and transform it into a true, modern student center. On December 11, 2017, the Board officially agreed to commence construction of the project.