February 28, 2017
At the University of Portland’s annual State of UP luncheon today, University president Rev. Mark L. Poorman C.S.C. unveiled the plans for Dundon-Berchtold Hall, a new academic center with over 63,000 sq. ft. of classrooms, offices, auditorium, career center, and the Dundon-Berchtold Institute.
“I can imagine no better place for our students to engage in their education and to seek answers to core questions than our new academic center,” Fr. Poorman remarked to the audience. Dundon-Berchtold Hall will “take the University of Portland to new heights and deeply impact our students’ experiences for generations to come.”
A $15 million commitment from Board of Regents member Amy Dundon-Berchtold and Jim Berchtold '63 served as the lead gift towards the construction of the new center. The gift also funded the Dundon-Berchtold Institute for Moral Formation and Applied Ethics, which will be housed in the new building.
Dundon-Berchtold Hall will provide much needed academic space for the campus. As the student population at the University has grown 30% over the past decade, classroom space has remained the same. Many of the classrooms in the building will be designed for interactive learning, with spaces that are equipped with moveable furniture and updated technology. Other “cluster” classrooms will be used for small groups of students to work cooperatively and collaboratively together on projects and assignments, a core requirement of many University courses across all disciplines.
The Dundon-Berchtold project continues a wave of capital construction and improvements at the University. Since 2009, the University has constructed or renovated 11 new buildings or structures on the 150-acre campus. Most recent construction includes the Beauchamp Recreation & Wellness Center (August 2015) and Lund Family Hall (August 2016), as well as the complete renovation of the Pilot House (October 2015), which houses the University’s bookstore, dining facility, kitchen, and lounge.
The University plans to begin demolition of Howard Hall, a former recreation center, in the late spring, with construction of the new building on that site starting in late summer.