Every year there seems to be construction just about anywhere you go. Of course we tend to focus on the negatives first: the noise of big machines, big and slow trucks clogging up the roads, and of course, you have to take detours.
But there are also lots of positives to construction! For example, you know you are going to experience something brand new. I love new things! At UW Oshkosh we’ve got a lot of construction going on… which means a lot of new things in store. I am especially excited for the brand new state-of-the-art academic building that is set to open up this fall. On top of enjoying class in a new and beautiful building, the name is also pretty stellar: Sage Hall.
- a mentor in spiritual and philosophical topics who is renowned for profound wisdom;
- having wisdom that comes with age and experience;
- aromatic fresh or dried gray-green leaves used widely as seasoning;
- any of various plants of the genus Salvia; a cosmopolitan herb.
The first two bullets are pretty obvious, as you need wisdom for teaching people new and complex things.
The second two bullets relate to the fact that this building is also extremely sustainable and environmentally friendly. (I’ll talk about that later.)
As a student who has spent four years at UW Oshkosh, I can say that my expectations on this new building have been far exceeded… and I haven’t even had a class in it yet.
First of all, if you think this academic building is just any old educational building, you are mistaken. The new building will provide 27 state-of-the-art classrooms, two lecture halls (the biggest lecture halls on campus), 23 labs and dozens of breakout, study and project rooms.
(If all of this schoolwork-related talk is stressing you out, then you can go relax in the new Einstein Bagels located in Sage Hall and eat yourself some bagel bites! Those bites will surely prepare your brain for studying.)
This building is the new home of the College of Business and the departments of History, Political Science, Geography, Journalism and my program: Sociology. (Another reason I love it!) In addition, these five programs of the College of Letters and Science are housed here: Women’s Studies, Environmental Studies, African American Studies, Social Justice, and International Studies.
It’s true that this building is going to provide nice and comfortable accommodations for our faculty and students. But we must not overlook how accommodating we are being as a campus to our environment. This new building has achieved the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) gold standard.
More than 70 percent of the building’s hot water use is powered by solar panels on the rooftop, more than 90 percent of regularly occupied spaces are lighted primarily by sunlight and the shades are lighter to encourage the use of this natural lighting. Of course there are more high-tech things involved that I don’t understand, but all of these environmental friendly initiatives will also save the University of Wisconsin Oshkosh $182,000 annually! In the long run, it will be about six million dollars!
Now that you know all of these fancy details about the building, you should see how good it looks! I stopped by the other day to snap a few photos so you can see for yourself. I hope this will lure you into the building and then you can smell fresh new construction, the warm bagels, and new minds exploding out of this universe with knowledge and innovation. (Okay that was really cheesy.) Enjoy!