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Craig Hall opens

This fall, the Graduate School of Social Work (GSSW) welcomed its students into a new home — Craig Hall — which is a renovation and expansion of Spruce Hall, the school’s home since 1976. The building was revamped with a specific purpose in mind: to provide an environment that facilitates learning.

At 56,000 square feet, Craig Hall includes a spacious plaza and outdoor classroom at the building’s main entrance. The main floor features a student lounge, cafĂ© and virtual library.

A 15,000-square-foot addition to the original building houses a community room that seats up to 300 people for special events. Expanded classroom and office space in the building reflect the school’s growing enrollment and the recent addition of several new faculty and staff positions.

Classrooms and break-out rooms located at the ends of hallways facilitate interaction between students and faculty whose offices line each wing. Colorful stained-glass windows punctuate three of the building’s four stories.

But, the true beauty of Craig Hall lies in its academic enhancements, says Assoc. Dean and MSW Director Christian Molidor.

The building features two clinical suites that Molidor says are unique among the country’s graduate social work programs. Students take turns role-playing interviews and therapy sessions in an office surrounded by two-way mirrors while classmates observe and critique their work. Students also may videotape the sessions, edit the videos for class presentations and critique their skill development over time.

Technology in Craig Hall also allows classes to be simulcast to other locations, including GSSW’s distance education program in Durango.

Building namesakes Rebecca (MSW ’84 and PhD ’00) and James Craig made the $4 million gift that kicked off the $11 million GSSW building campaign in 2001. Rebecca T. and James P. Craig Hall officially opened on Aug. 12 and was dedicated on Oct. 5.

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