On Tuesday, Sept. 15, Converse officially opened the 2009-2010 academic year by celebrating a multitude of accomplishments since the launch of the strategic plan in 2007. Among them was an announcement that Converse has secured gift commitments of more than $12 million to immediately begin work on a student apartment housing project, which will open in February 2011. Converse also celebrated the completion of its first ‘green’ building with a ribbon cutting ceremony for the renovated Kuhn Hall, a $5 million project designed to achieve LEED (Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design) certification.
Lauding the “feathers in Converse’s cap” that have resulted from the collective dedication of the Converse community, President Fleming presented everyone at the Opening Convocation service with plumes of purple and gold feathers to mark the occasion.
Student Apartment Housing
“Margaret Mead said ‘A small group of thoughtful people can change the world. Indeed, it’s the only thing that ever has.’ In Converse’s case, a small group of trustees had the vision to push this project forward at a time when many are putting dreams on hold. Thirty-nine people made this happen with gift commitments totaling more than $12 million. Their investments serve the best interest of our students and the long-term vitality and health of the College. This is a story of optimism and a can-do spirit, demonstrating that when people are willing to think differently about operations and avenues to success, great accomplishments can be made in the face of adversity,” President Fleming said.
The apartment housing is Converse’s second project designed to meet LEED certification and is supported financially by every member of the College’s Board of Trustees. Plans for the apartment housing have been underway for the past year, but Converse prioritized securing full funding before approval was given to begin construction. The apartment housing will provide students with progressively independent living options that prepare them to transition to life on their own after graduation and is designed to facilitate community building, a hallmark of the Converse experience.