NUSU, Nipissing University celebrate opening of new student centre
North Bay, ON - Nipissing University and the Nipissing University Student Union (NUSU) celebrated the official grand opening of the highly anticipated NUSU Student Centre today during a small in-person ceremony that was live streamed for the campus and larger community to enjoy.
“This new building is one of the most beautiful student spaces that I have seen among Canadian universities. It is bright, open and with its glass walls, permits students to take in the University’s outdoor setting and view of Lake Nipissing in the distance. Students can meet, enjoy social time, and host large-scale events. It is nothing short of spectacular,” said Dr. Kevin Wamsley, President and Vice-Chancellor, Nipissing University. “The vision for this Centre was born long before my time here, and its impact will serve many generations of Lakers to come. I am so proud to be part of this occasion and I want to offer Nipissing students and University staff my congratulations for all of their hard work and extensive planning.”
Situated at the corner of College Drive and Monastery Road, the NUSU Student Centre is a defining feature on the approach to campus, welcoming students and visitors while symbolizing the importance of the student body at Nipissing University.
“This is an exciting chapter for both NUSU and Nipissing University,” said Joe McIntosh, President, NUSU. “This building represents the culmination of years of hard work by countless individuals and we look forward to welcoming the Lakers community into the space.”
Designed by North Bay firm Mitchell Jensen Architects and built by local contractor Kenalex, the nearly 32,000-square-foot multi-use facility features study nooks, an atrium, office space for NUSU, a student quad with outdoor seating, study rooms, a restaurant with an outdoor patio, and a nightclub. The restaurant, Bay Bistro, and nightclub, On the Rocks, will open next year.
In 2008, Nipissing students voted to start paying an annual levy to contribute to the construction fund. The funds were put towards building costs. Nipissing University Alumni Advisory Board (NUAAB) President, Lisa Snider, presented NUAAB’s $250,000 contribution to the building and highlighted the importance of the space to current and future alumni:
“Many students and alumni have contributed financially and otherwise to this project over the years so it’s wonderful to see this project come to fruition,” Snider said. “The new space will serve as the backdrop for many great memories for students and alumni alike and further enhance the Nipissing experience.”
The boardroom at the new facility will be named in honour of former Nipissing First Nation Deputy Chief, Dr. Muriel Sawyer who passed away earlier this year. Sawyer held an honorary degree from Nipissing, was a custodian of language and culture, and an irreplaceable advocate for Indigenous education.
The $13-million building will open to Nipissing University students, faculty and staff on September 20. Hours of operation will be Monday to Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. The space will eventually be open to the public and wider Lakers community.