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2008.10.08 > For Immediate Release
contact: Tim Fitzgerald - University Relations
phone: 402.554.3536 - email: tfitzgerald@unomaha.edu

CPACS Building Dedication Set for Oct. 8

Omaha - For the first time in its 35-year history, all the units of the University of Nebraska at Omaha (UNO) College of Public Affairs and Community Service (CPACS) are located under one roof. Dedication ceremonies for the newly opened and renovated CPACS Building will be held Wednesday, Oct. 8 at 11 a.m. on the north side of the building. The ceremonies will directly follow UNO’s Fall Convocation, held in the Strauss Performing Arts Center.

The building has brought together all of the college's units for the first time since the college was started in 1973. The units include the Aviation Institute; Department of Gerontology; Schools of Social Work, Public Administration, and Criminology and Criminal Justice; the Juvenile Justice Institute; the Goodrich Scholarship Program; the Center for Public Affairs Research; William Brennan Institute for Labor Studies and the Division of Continuing Studies.

“The building is fabulous and everything I hoped it would be,” said B.J. Reed, dean of CPACS. “Our themes of transparency, engagement and collaboration are manifest in the building.” Constructed originally as the Engineering Building in 1957, the CPACS Building has housed a variety of departments, classrooms and offices since the College of Engineering moved to the University of Nebraska Peter Kiewit Institute on the Pacific Street campus. Beginning in the spring of 2007, much of the CPACS Building was gutted, and two new additions providing 20,000 square feet of new space were added to the structure.

“The addition of this facility is an exciting opportunity for UNO and the College of Public Affairs and Community Service,” said UNO Chancellor John Christensen. “For the first time in their history, this college has all of its programs under one roof. I look forward to witnessing the exciting teaching and research opportunities, as well as collaborative community service projects, that will emerge from this building.”

University of Nebraska President James B. Milliken, who holds a faculty appointment in the College, said, “The College of Public Affairs and Community Service has some of the premier programs at the University of Nebraska, with several specialty areas, including criminal justice and public finance, ranked in the top 10 nationally. I also take great pride in the Goodrich Scholarship Program, which has made our promise of affordable access to a quality education a reality for more than 1,000 students.”

The building’s design provides more light for classrooms, offices and meeting rooms by using glass walls looking onto the hallways. “The windows and glass provide us with lots of space and opportunities to meet with students,” said Reed. “I’ve been told that faculty like their offices and are engaging with students in a different way. I think the collaboration will increase, advising will improve and interaction will expand. The new technology in the classrooms and labs also is changing the dynamics of the college.”

The renovation work cost approximately $14.2 million and was funded with state allocations. The two additions, one on the north and the second on the south side of the building, cost approximately $4.5 million and were funded by private donations. Donors who have made lead gift commitments to the University of Nebraska Foundation to benefit this project are The Peter Kiewit Foundation, The Lozier Foundation, Mammel Family Foundation, William and Ruth Scott Family Foundation, and Weitz Family Foundation.

HDR Inc. provided the architectural design for the CPACS Building, and W. Boyd Jones Construction Co. was the construction manager.

For more information call B.J. Reed at (402) 554-2276. * *

UNO will celebrate its 100th anniversary beginning October 8, 2008. This celebration will recognize the partnership among the City of Omaha, its citizens and UNO to build a vibrant and dynamic community. The centennial theme is “UNO: Central To Our City Since 1908.” This theme acknowledges the past contributions of UNO to the community and sets the stage for great things to come.

UNO, inaugurated in 1968, emerged from the Municipal University of Omaha, established in 1931, which grew out of the University of Omaha founded in 1908. For Centennial information, go to http://www.unomaha.edu/100/.

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