Eddy Music Center Renovations Are Complete
A stroll through the newly renovated Eddy Music Center finds larger teaching studios, enhanced instrumental storage space and a 4,200-square-foot addition that addresses the critical needs of Alma College’s growing music programs.
Eight months of construction work that began with a groundbreaking ceremony last May has concluded as the new and improved Eddy Music Center opens its doors to students, faculty and staff.
“The expansion of the Eddy Music Center accommodates the remarkable growth of students interested in music at Alma in recent years,” says Alma College President Jeff Abernathy. “More than one third of our students participate in music programs. This facility adds to the richness of The Alma Experience.”
The Eddy Music Center lobby with rounded-glass front.
The $1.8 million project is being funded largely by gifts, with 40 percent of the $1.5 million fund-raising goal raised to date.
A $500,000 gift from the Rollin M. Gerstacker Foundation for the Eddy project continues a legacy of support for Alma College by the Midland-based foundation. Past gifts from the Gerstacker Foundation have supported the construction of Wright Hall, Stone Recreation Center, Remick Heritage Center, science equipment and scholarships for students.
“We are deeply grateful for the opportunities the Rollin M. Gerstacker Foundation has provided for Alma College students over the past five decades,” says Abernathy. “The Gerstacker Foundation has impacted our College in so many ways, making a difference that our students, faculty and staff can appreciate and experience each day.”
The Eddy project involved extensive renovations to the existing 10,000-square-foot building that included moving interior walls to transform small practice rooms into larger studios, adding offices and creating large dedicated instrumental storage space.
The new addition contains practice rooms, a recording studio, faculty offices, additional instrumental storage space, and a front lobby with a rounded glass front. The lobby is large enough to host receptions and greet campus visitors— gathering space that did not exist in the original building.
“The physical space in the original Eddy Music Center was no longer adequate to accommodate our music programs,” says Carol Hyble, vice president for advancement. “Enrollment in our major ensembles has more than doubled since the building was first constructed in 1975, and the number of music faculty also has grown. More space was needed for teaching, practice and instrumental storage, as well as comfortable areas for people to meet and relax.”
Music performance opportunities are many at Alma. Students are involved in choir, the marching band, symphony and concert bands, and percussion and jazz ensembles. Many students also receive individual voice lessons and private instrument instruction. In addition, a bagpipe band adds to the College’s Scottish heritage.
Participants in Alma’s ensembles not only major in music but also chemistry, psychology, education, business, religious studies or any of Alma’s 31 academic programs. Many residents from Gratiot, Isabella, Midland and surrounding counties attend performances by Alma’s ensembles.
Posted: Mon, January 17th, 2011 at 3:48PM