Grace College breaks ground for expanding dining hall

From L to R: James Blooemendaal, Dr. Laurie Owen, Andre Stone, Kiersten Martin, Dr. Bill Katip, Hannah Navarro, Jennifer Hollar, Dr. Paul Blair, Kevin Hogan, Andy Miller and Travis McDougal break ground on the Alpha Dining project. (Photo: Nick Deranek/News Now Warsaw)

Grace College officials broke ground on Alpha Dining Hall’s renovation and expansion on Thursday afternoon.

The $5.5 million project will help expand the hall to seat 420 people, up from 360 in the previous hall. College President Dr. Bill Katip said during yesterday’s ceremony that the project will also bring the addition of new spaces for students to gather, including patio seating where 25-30 students will be able to enjoy the outdoors, as well as a new lobby space, complete with a large fireplace.

The initial funding for the project comes from the schools ASPIRE campaign, completed in 2019. One of the campaign objectives was to invest in spaces for students to gather. Through ASPIRE, and many generous donations since, $5.1 has been raised to date toward a $5.5 million fundraising goal. The school plans to raise the final $200,000 on its annual Day of Giving on April 29.