There is much that influences students’ lives when they leave home to attend college. Professors teach them and help mold their lives as they transition into adulthood, preparing them for careers and guiding them to lead lives that benefit society. Participation in extracurricular activities—intercollegiate athletics, clubs, and organizations—instills in students the importance of teamwork, dedication, resilience, and leadership.
We know that a satisfying and enriching college experience is dependent on more than the quality of educational offerings, teaching facilities, and the depth of extracurricular activities. Housing also plays a vital role in the lives of students, who spend more than a third of their time at college in residence halls—studying, interacting with friends, and sleeping. With that in mind, Alfred University has made a further commitment to improve its residence halls.
Three recently-completed projects and two more that will be undertaken next summer demonstrate that commitment. On Friday, our University hosted a ceremony unveiling the two-story Link, connecting Tefft and Moskowitz (formerly Reimer) residence halls. We also commemorated the completed renovations of Tefft and Moskowitz.
The renovation of Moskowitz Hall, funded with a gift from Trustee Ann Moskowitz, the wife of late Trustee Joel Moskowitz ’61, was completed in 2018. The Tefft Hall renovation, funded by a gift from Trustee Marlin Miller ’54, ’89 HD, and ’19 HD, was finished this summer. Both projects included the refurbishment of student rooms as well as restroom and shower facilities; construction of new common areas on ground floors, including kitchen and lounge facilities; and enhancements to resident directors’ rooms and offices.
The Link between the two buildings is amply furnished, and its floor-to-ceiling windows make it warm and inviting. Outside is a natural gas fire pit and a seating wall adorned by the artwork of Olivia Piazza ’19, our University’s graphic designer. The Link was conceived early in 2018 by students. It was brought to life through the philanthropic support of Marlin Miller, who saw a need to create more intersection points for our students and thereby further strengthen the Alfred University community.
The Link between Tefft and Moskowitz will provide a place where students from both residence halls can meet and spend time together, something Marlin says is an important part of college life.
Today’s college students “don’t socialize as much,” Marlin said at Friday’s Link unveiling. “My hope is that students bring their friends and thereby make this and make this an important hub for the Alfred University community.”
The University’s commitment to improving student housing does not end with the renovations of Tefft and Moskowitz, or the Link connecting the two residence halls. Last week, our Board of Trustees unanimously approved renovating Openhym and Crawford Halls (the latter is one of seven of our Pine Hill Suites).
Of the $10 million investment that will be required to renovate Openhym and Crawford, Marlin Miller has committed $2.5 million as a challenge grant to raise the needed funding while our Board Chair, Greg Connors ’92, and his family foundation have committed a further $1.5 million. Work on Openhym and Crawford will be undertaken this coming summer, with occupancy slated for next fall.One of our University’s primary objectives is to transform student lives. Providing our students with an enriching, enjoyable living experience will help us to meet that goal. Please join me in thanking Marlin Miller, Ann and the late Joel Moskowitz, and Greg Connors for their philanthropic leadership with respect to this important endeavor.
Please also join me in thanking the many students, staff, faculty, and Board members who have provided valuable input to date on the forthcoming renovations of Openhym and Crawford Halls. Our students, drawn to Alfred University by a wide range of curricular and co-curricular offerings, bring a great diversity of backgrounds to our campus. The renovations demonstrate a commitment on the part of our University to create important intersections for our students while fostering community.
P.S. For those of you interested in philanthropically helping us with the Miller-Connors challenge for renovating Openhym and Crawford, please contact Jason Amore ’97, ’99 MS, our vice president of Advancement. There are some wonderful naming opportunities for individual rooms, social areas, group meeting areas, Maker Spaces, kitchen/dining areas, small-group study cubicles, indoor/outdoor fireplace lounges, game rooms, business offices, entire floors, and even the buildings. We will be happy to share design renderings.