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Inside Iowa State, a newspaper for faculty and staff, is published by the Office of University Relations.

Oct. 24, 2008

Alumni Center cove Alumni Center door
Alumni Center manhole cover
Alumni Center desk
Alumni Center mantel Alumni Center
Alumni Center stairs

You're invited

Staff and members of the ISU Alumni Association will dedicate their new center on Beach Avenue Saturday, Oct. 25. The dedication will begin at 3 p.m. on the east side of the building.

At first glance, the Alumni Center contains some fabulous spaces for meetings and gatherings. Take a closer look and you may notice some quirky -- but meaningful -- touches in the building, some of which are captured in these photos: a reception area desk formerly used by president James Hilton, three sets of fireplace mantel brackets from the exterior of central campus' English Office Building (demolished in 2004), the original north brass doors to the Memorial Union bearing the names of students who died in WWII (removed in 1984), a fluted glass window removed from a Physics Hall lab during renovation, lapboards once used by students in the Curtiss Hall auditorium, and customized Iowa State manhole covers that predate 1959 and now are in the pavement near the center's east and west entrances.

"It was very important to me, based on the location of this facility among the Iowa State Center and the athletic facilities, that this facility harkens back, as much as possible, to its central campus roots," said alumni association director Jeffery Johnson.

There also are design features that connect the Alumni Center to central campus: four interior limestone walls represent the Memorial Union and Curtiss, MacKay and Beardshear halls; exterior brick matches the color of State Gym; a central staircase mimics those in Beardshear; arching windows remind us of the north windows in the Union, among others.

"We want this place to be the stopping point for all alumni before they make their pilgrimage to campus," Johnson said. "And if they don't get that far, we hope they find a little feel of the campus in the Alumni Center. The university accents in the building's designs and its artifacts should help stir memories and aid the association in its efforts to further advance the university." Photos by Bob Elbert.