Thanks to support from friends and alumni, Boise State University plans to begin construction later this year on a new $37 million home for the College of Business and Economics.
The Micron Technology Foundation committed to a $12.5 million lead gift for the business building in 2007, with $5 million of it contingent on Boise State raising matching funds by Dec. 31, 2009.
“Thanks to the overwhelming generosity of our alumni and friends and their faith in our mission, we have met the match,” said Patrick Shannon, dean of the college. “More than 750 different donors supported us on this project, even during a difficult economic time.”
The building, designed by Boise firm Hummel Architects, will be about 110,000 square feet and will support the college’s future growth. Located at the corner of Capitol Boulevard and University Drive, it will be a gateway to the west end of campus. It’s expected to open fall 2012.
“The Micron Foundation is committed to excellence in education,” said Dee Mooney, Micron Foundation’s executive director. “Collaborating with and supporting Boise State is one of the best ways to ensure we reach this common goal, and we are pleased the university successfully met the fundraising challenge.”
The building’s design emphasizes student learning, research and community collaboration. Its four floors will include state-of-the art classrooms; a 250-seat lecture hall; a student commons area that includes food service, unique student work spaces, a financial technology classroom and financial trading room; productive spaces for research; interactive areas such as a boardroom that welcome members of the community and encourage collaboration; and a vibrant courtyard. It also will house the college’s Business Research and Economic Development Center, the Idaho Small Business Development Center, TechHelp, the Centre for Creativity and Innovation and the Center for Entrepreneurship.
Sustainable building practices are a prime consideration in the building’s design. For example, plans include using geothermal energy as a heating source and optimizing use of natural light. The high-performance, environmentally progressive building is expected to use at least 40 percent less energy than a comparable structure.
Since the construction of the existing business building 40 years ago, enrollment in the college’s programs has grown to more than 3,300 students. Enrollment during the next 10 years is expected to grow 26 percent in undergraduate programs, and the number of graduate students is expected to double.
Boise State’s business college has achieved the gold standard of accreditation. Only about 4 percent of all the business programs in the world and 20 percent in the United States have AACSB accreditation, and Boise State is one of them. Its accountancy program also is accredited. Next year, its graduate programs will be included in the “Princeton Review” ranking of best business schools. The college aspires to build graduate and undergraduate programs with a national reputation for their quality and innovation and to create internationally renowned centers of excellence. These efforts will be greatly enhanced through the creation of a world-class business building, Shannon said.
Overall, the new business building is part of a comprehensive campaign to transform Boise State into a metropolitan research university. Destination Distinction is a $175 million fundraising initiative for the people, places and programs of Boise State. To date, almost $120 million has been raised from alumni and friends in current and future gifts to support the university’s strategic plan for facilities, students, faculty, academic programs, athletics and research.
The College of Business and Economics will focus its attention on fundraising for people and programs, said development director Cheryl Larabee, and recognition opportunities are still available within the new building if a gift is made to fund professorships, scholarships, programs or the Dean’s Excellence Fund.
For more information, visit http://cobe.boisestate.edu/cobefuturehome/ or contact Larabee at (208) 426-2039.