CONWAY, Ark. (September 29,
2017) – Hendrix College on the afternoon of September 29 celebrated the opening
of its new front door of campus, the Mary Ann and David Dawkins Welcome Center,
with a ribbon-cutting ceremony and tours of the new facility at the
intersection of Harkrider and Winfield Streets.
“The process of making these
tons of wood and masonry and glass and tile and metal into something
unmistakably Hendrix has, as you will see when you begin to explore inside,
already begun,” said President William M. Tsutsui in his remarks at the ceremony.
“One of the things that I love most about the Dawkins Welcome Center is the way
in which it has been conceived and executed to embrace and reflect the
creativity and character of the Hendrix community.” The building features
creations by Hendrix students, faculty, and staff, ranging from paintings and
prints to a glass wall bearing designs found on campus, and serving as a
projection screen for video vignettes of scenes unique to Hendrix.
At 17,550 square feet, the
Dawkins Welcome Center includes spaces designed for offering hospitality, sharing
information with large and small groups, holding meetings with individual
students and their families, and providing work space for the College’s
admission and financial aid staff. The new facility features all-LED lighting
(including lights that will radiate Hendrix orange from the cupola at night), connection to an
energy-efficient district cooling loop providing climate control to multiple
buildings on campus, and as many materials as possible sourced from within 500
miles of the construction site. Because of these and other elements of the
construction, the College is expecting to receive a Leadership in Energy and
Environmental Design (LEED) rating for the building.
The building is named for Mary
Ann and David Dawkins, United Methodists and longtime residents of Little Rock.
After attending a performance of the Hendrix College Choir’s Candlelight Carol
Service at First United Methodist Church in North Little Rock in 1986, Mary Ann
Dawkins established an endowed scholarship fund at Hendrix in memory of her
late husband. Following her death in 2014, Hendrix received the largest gift in
its history from her estate.
The Dawkins Welcome Center’s
first major event geared toward prospective students will be held Saturday,
In the coming weeks, the
Offices of Admission and Financial Aid will relocate to the Dawkins Welcome
Center from historic Ellis Hall, a building on the south side of campus
originally constructed to house Hendrix presidents and their families. Ellis
Hall will then undergo renovation before becoming the new home of the
Departments of Religion and Philosophy.
A private liberal arts
college in Conway, Arkansas, Hendrix College consistently earns recognition as
one of the country’s leading liberal arts institutions, and is featured in Colleges That Change Lives: 40 Schools That
Will Change the Way You Think About Colleges. Its academic quality and
rigor, innovation, and value have established Hendrix as a fixture in numerous
college guides, lists, and rankings. Founded in 1876, Hendrix has been
affiliated with the United Methodist Church since 1884. To learn more, visit www.hendrix.edu.