Campus & Community

University secures naming gift for Academic Commons

The University of Denver has received a lead naming gift from Boston venture capitalist and alumnus Ed Anderson (BFA ’71) and his wife, Linda Cabot, to fund the University’s new library. Now dubbed the Anderson Academic Commons, the academic hub in the heart of the campus is scheduled to open in late March.

Built on the site of the former Penrose Library, the Anderson Academic Commons will serve as a 21st century facility for collaboration. It will house the main library, consisting of the Penrose Collection and traditional library services, as well as the library’s Research Center and Digital Media Center. The Academic Commons also will house key high-use academic support services, including the Writing Center and the Writing Program, the Math Center, the Technology Help Center and the University’s Office of Teaching and Learning. The grouping of library collections and services with these academic success centers will facilitate cross-disciplinary interaction to increase the depth and effectiveness of student learning.

“On this campus, there’s a lot of agreement to support the notion that a strong library with vital, engaged, collaborative connections to other key high-volume student support services is a really essential approach to the future of academic libraries — and to the future of those academic support services,” says Nancy Allen, dean and director of University Libraries.

The light-filled, 154,223-square-foot, energy-efficient space will be configured with numerous rooms for group study and project work, seating for more than 1,850 students, quiet study areas, and technologically advanced services and support. The Anderson Academic Commons is designed to facilitate a new learning model — one based on connectivity and collaboration.

“It’s a great place for students to come together in a very elegant building, with incredible views of the mountains — the soul of Colorado,” Anderson says. “They will be able to do great reading and great research, attend great seminars and discuss what they’ve learned. It will hopefully open up new opportunities for them.”

Anderson, founder of Boston’s North Bridge Venture Partners, is a University of Denver trustee. In addition to his BFA in advertising design from DU, he has an MBA from the Columbia University Graduate School of Business. He has served as an investor and director in some of the communications industry’s most successful start-up companies. Anderson and Cabot, an artist and documentary filmmaker, are supporters of many educational causes, including summer enrichment programs for underprivileged children and charter and secondary schools.

The Anderson Academic Commons will open to the University of Denver community and the public beginning March 25.





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