New residence hall, new science labs and a downtown eatery come to campus
A beautiful new residence hall, top-notch science labs, expanded dining options and a greener, more energy-efficient campus are part of what's new for students arriving back on campus this semester. It's good to be home at UNC Asheville again.
The university welcomes 550 new Bulldogs to the campus community as freshmen move into their residence halls and get ready to start classes on Monday, Aug. 20.
"We are expecting a freshman class that is remarkably able academically," said UNC Asheville Provost Jane Fernandes. "The students we have accepted have strong academic profiles, with excellent high school preparation and notable college entrance exam scores."
The average SAT for the incoming freshman class is expected to be about 1188, surpassing last year's average of 1174. For more than a decade, UNC Asheville has consistently been among the top three or four campuses in the UNC system—along with UNC-Chapel Hill, N.C. State and UNC-Wilmington—when ranked by entering freshman SATs.
New Residence Hall Opens
A new five-story residence hall opens this semester for 300 returning students. Overlook Hall offers four- and six-person suites that combine single and double rooms with a shared living area and bathroom. It has kitchenettes, laundry rooms, study areas, meeting space, dining facility and a rooftop study area and lounge with views of campus and Mount Pisgah.
With the addition of Overlook Hall, some 1,400 students, or almost 40 percent of the student body, will live on campus.
Overlook Hall's new geothermal field is designed to supply heating and cooling to six adjacent residence halls for much of the year, with backup heating and cooling available during the heaviest demand. The university expects the system to operate at 40% of the cost of traditional systems. The nearby residence halls will also share Overlook Hall's new solar-heated hot water system.
New Dining Options
Overlook Hall will also have a food court that is open late into the evening, offering sandwiches, wraps and grab-and-go items. According to Senior Director of Dining Services Emily Williams, The Down Under, which is located at the ground level of Overlook, will be open to students until 2 a.m. between Monday and Thursday.
Menus and hours of operation are available here.
Vegan foodies rejoice! In the Sherrill Center's Wellness Café, you will discover Rosetta's "Kitchenette," which is a new venture of beloved downtown Asheville restaurant, Rosetta's Kitchen. The Kitchen will be serving "home-style vegan soul food," according to owner Rosetta Star. This new menu should be a crowd pleaser on campus as Williams cited a recent campus survey that indicated about one-third of UNC Asheville students, faculty and staff choose vegan or vegetarian diets. This dining location will continue to serve Starbucks coffee as well.
Everyone who loved last year's noodle menu at the Sherrill Center's Wellness Café should head over to dining area at Highsmith Student Union.
With the completion of the Rhoades Hall renovations this fall and the opening of the Zeis Science and Multimedia building in 2009, UNC Asheville now has some of the best undergraduate science and math facilities in the Southeast."
—Keith Krumpe, dean of natural sciences and professor of chemistry
Rhoades Hall is New Again
Students in engineering, physics, math, and environmental studies will be working this year in superb new labs in Rhoades Hall. The new science labs are part of the state-funded, $8.8 million renovation of Rhoades, the campus' first classroom building. The vintage 1961 building is now upfitted for the current century with nearly a dozen new classrooms, and five new teaching labs, six new research labs, including a high-tech robotics lab for engineering students, high-end computational labs for physics students, and server-based computer lab for environmental science students studying GIS.
White boards along the hallways provide informal space for student-faculty exchanges as does the new, two-story glass-walled study area at the building's entrance.
"With the completion of the Rhoades Hall renovations this fall and the opening of the Zeis Science and Multimedia building in 2009, UNC Asheville now has some of the best undergraduate science and math facilities in the Southeast," said Keith Krumpe, UNC Asheville dean of natural sciences and professor of chemistry.
The Rhoades Hall renovation itself is a study in green retrofitting. Equipped with geothermal heating and cooling, a 10,000-gallon underground rainwater cistern that collects water for the building's low-flow toilets, occupancy monitors to control lighting, and larger windows to add daylight and reduce energy costs, Rhoades Hall exemplifies how an old building can be made more functional and greener at the same time.