Students, faculty, staff and community members gathered at the College of the Desert Campus for the grand opening of a new student center. The 14,700 square-foot structure cost just over $3.5 million to renovate.
The building is now home to a renovated dining hall and new offices for Student Life and Associated Students at College of the Desert. Student Government President Tony Aguilar is relieved about the completion of the new building, “This is something that students have been waiting for, for a very long time. Finally a brand new facility here at COD that can meet our needs, the needs of our students most importantly. “
The upgrade to the campus is focused on making the area more student-friendly. The new center also includes meeting space, a game room and a laptop counter for students to do homework or surf the web. “It’s a gathering place. Students come here and they find collaboration. They’re able to talk to students while they have a snack and being able to study. It’s really become the focal point of what student life is on this campus,” said College of the Desert President Jerry Patton.
The dining hall will provide more dining options including a focus on healthier eating, as many of the students have requested. It will also include a Starbucks to aid late-night study sessions. Catering will be available for on-campus events as well.
Not only is the new building student-friendly, it’s also eco-friendly. In conjunction with the College’s Policy on Sustainability and Stewardship, the dining hall is going green. Recycled products were used in the construction of the new building, and the use of nonbiodegradable products will be minimized throughout the year.
The facility is a product of the Measure B bond passed by voters in 2004. The bond allows the university to continue plans for construction and renovations through 2015.