Changing the Landscape of an Oregon State Business Education
Austin Hall was designed to be an all-hours destination for students, an open, comfortable and welcoming place that would foster discussion and collaboration in an environment tailored to providing a 21st century business education.
Opened September 2014, the bright, airy 100,000-square-foot building is clearly living up to its promise.
“It’s huge for the university,” said Obum Gwacham, who completed his marketing degree in fall 2014. “I looked for reasons to stay later than in any other building. I was taking a statistics class and the computers in the lab had Statgraphics, so I just made the computer lab my favorite place.”
The building has 700 seats spread among 10 classrooms, plus 23 computer- and big-screen-equipped project rooms that students flock to, including in evenings and on weekends. Students are also slowly learning about the “hidden” study areas on the second and fourth floors behind the staircases. The west fourth-floor location in particular offers spectacular views.
There’s also the Jon Masterson Family Marketplace (complete with chairs, sofas and fireplace), The Reser Student Success Center (for academic and career advising), an atrium and study area dedicated to graduate students, event space, Trader Bing’s Café, and a wide, central staircase that creates opportunity for impromptu discussion.
“I can bump into a student and end up in a conversation,” said Anthony Klotz, assistant professor of management. “There was no place in Bexell to do that, to get to know students outside of class.”
Ken and Joan Austin and Al and Pat Reser provided the lead gifts for the funding of $50M building, which was comprised of private philanthropy and state bonds. THA Architecture was the architect of Austin Hall and Andersen Construction (owned by alumnus David Andersen ’80) was the builder and general contractor.
Austin Hall Facts
Location: Oregon State University Campus, 2751 SW Jefferson Avenue, Corvallis, Oregon
- 100,000 sq. ft. total
- $50+ million dollar project finished on time and on budget ($30+ million from private philanthropy and $20 million in state bonds)
- Nearly $2 million in state-of-the-art technology
- $1.5 million in furnishings (classroom, collaborative areas, office, etc.)
- 10 classrooms, including a 250 seat auditorium, a 65 seat and eight 48 seat classrooms
- 700 seats of classroom space
- Reser Student Success Center which houses the Career Success Center and Academic Advising
- 100 computer seats in open or classroom space and project rooms
- MBA suite, including project rooms, team room, collaborative work/study area and program offices
- Business Research Suite
- 76 faculty offices, Ph.D. workroom, Dean’s board room and eight conference rooms
- Programs and operation offices/suites (Austin Family Business Program, faculty services, communications and marketing)
- Trader Bing’s Café, the newest café on the OSU campus
- First floor Marketplace with a fireplace and seating for students to study, meet and collaborate
- Events Room which can hold events for up to 75 guests
- As part of the Oregon Arts Commission, “Percent for Art” initiative, 1% of the building’s budget is dedicated to public art. Austin Hall features a two-story, 2D Art piece, titled “The Currency of Insight” and a 3D iconic Abacus representing the college’s history
Lead Gifts: Ken and Joan Austin $10 million, Al and Pat Reser $6 million
Career Success Center/College of Business Corporate Partners that have invested in the building and the center include: adidas, Aequitas Capital Management, Boeing, Daimler North American Trucks, Mutual of Enumclaw Insurance, The Odom Corporation, Oregon Bankers Association, OSU Federal (Community Credit Union). Also Dell, KPMG, a-dec, Portland General Electric, Reser’s and Salesforce are partners.
Architect: THA Architecture, Inc.
General Contractor: Andersen Construction