September 16, 2011

Newly renovated Mason Hall opens its doors

After more than two years of planning and six months of construction work, Mason Hall reopened today with guests enjoying tours of the building as well as coffee and snacks from the new Rohr Café.

The building, originally dedicated in 1999 and named in recognition of alumnus Maj. Gen. Raymond E. Mason Jr., places a focus on flexible and interactive spaces designed to reflect the workplace of today.

“It’s modern, wired, and collaborative,” said Christine A. Poon, dean and John W. Berry Sr. Chair in Business at Fisher. “That idea of modernity and elegance has really been achieved.”

The Rohr Café, meanwhile, serves as a central gathering spot for the Fisher community and features indoor and patio seating as well as wireless Internet. The menu offers coffee drinks from Starbucks and food options provided by the Blackwell. The café was made possible by a donation from alumnus Jim Rohr, chairman and chief executive officer of the PNC Financial Services Group.

Representing the Mason family at the event was Raymond E. Mason III. Also attending was Joseph A. Alutto, executive vice president and provost at The Ohio State University. Alutto served as dean of Fisher for 16 years, including the period when the six-building campus was constructed.

“These buildings are enabling devices for learning and it’s a delight to see that idea continuing,” said Alutto. “The driving force of everything the university does is to support students and faculty.”

Highlights of the renovation include:

  • Large and comfortable study areas, conference rooms, and 21 student breakout rooms
  • Redesigned administrative offices for units with a focus on action-based learning, including the Center for Entrepreneurship, Fisher Professional Services, Innovation Initiative, and International Programs Office
  • A multipurpose space inside the second floor rotunda for classes, meetings, receptions, and other special events
  • State-of-the-art technology throughout
  • LEED certification

 “Things have changed since Mason Hall opened 12 years ago,” said David Greenberger, chair of the renovation committee as well as chair of the Department of Management and Human Resources.

“We wanted to push the envelope in terms of exemplifying work in a high tech culture, one in which collaboration and energy are hallmarks.”