New Admissions Center to provide more room, other resources needed
October 20, 2009
Construction will begin soon on a new home for Wake Forest University’s Admissions and Welcome Center, which has operated for 20 years in a house where former Wake Forest presidents and their families once lived.
“The new Admissions and Welcome Center will offer the space, technology and resources to serve the needs of the Admissions office and, ultimately, the entire university community,” Director of Admissions Martha Allman said. “Growth sparked by our success in attracting the best and brightest students has strained our current facility.”
The number of prospective students visiting the center rose by 47 percent between 2005 and 2008. Last year, 15,634 prospective students visited, compared to 10,600 in 2005. Admissions officials expect 2009 numbers will be even higher.
The new 21,000-square-foot building will be constructed near the current center on Wake Forest Road. Later this month, members of the campus community will notice work beginning on a driveway adjacent to the current center’s parking lot. The new driveway will take construction crews to the nearby construction site, which is in an undeveloped area of campus.
The new center, approximately triple the size of the current one, will feature interview rooms, public meeting spaces and a 260-seat auditorium, in addition to staff offices and application processing areas. The auditorium will serve a variety of functions for the entire campus, including performances and activities associated with academic departments and various organizations.
The need for several interview rooms evolved recently as the university encouraged applicants to arrange for interviews at the Admissions and Welcome Center. Wake Forest has restructured its admissions process to provide for a closer assessment of each individual student, and interviews are an important part of that effort.
University officials expect the new building to assist in attracting a diverse range of students with intellectual curiosity and strong academic and leadership potential.
“The construction of our new center will demonstrate Wake Forest’s commitment to compete for the best students in the country,” Allman said.
The building’s design and materials will be in keeping with the original campus and building design, but it will incorporate modern elements and technologies, according to Jim Alty, associate vice president for facilities and campus services.
“In approaching the design of this building, we’ve emphasized meeting high standards for sustainability,” Alty said. The university anticipates achieving LEED silver certification for the building. LEED stands for Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design.
The new building is designed to promote a whole-building approach to sustainability by targeting performance measures in all LEED categories. Some sustainability features include the following:
- Water usage will be cut by 40 percent
- Energy usage will be trimmed by 24 percent
- More than 90 percent of indoor areas will have access to natural light
- Indoor environmental quality will be improved through monitoring to reduce air contaminants