NEW ROCHELLE, N.Y., May 12 /PRNewswire/ -- The College of New Rochelle
(CNR), the first college in the nation to offer a master's program in holistic
nursing, announced that it will again break new ground in education by
building a $25 million, 60,000-square-foot holistic Wellness Center. The
Center, a critical academic facility, will be unique in the greater New York
metropolitan area to bring together and integrate multiple disciplines to help
students understand and practice the principles of healthy living and wellness
throughout their lives.
(Photo: http://www.newscom.com/cgi-bin/prnh/20050512/NYTH048 )
"Through the Wellness Center, the College will expand our commitment to
education for health and well-being, and bring that knowledge into the
community," said Dr. Stephen J. Sweeny, President of The College of New
Rochelle. "We're not just constructing a building. We are drawing on our
strength as a women-centered, faith-based, liberal arts institution and
matching it with the critical need to build a healthier society."
Dr. Sweeny noted, "The Center is consistent with the way we've always done
things throughout our 100-year history. We are breaking new ground in what
will truly be an interdisciplinary approach to equipping students for lifelong
Groundbreaking for the Wellness Center is anticipated in late summer/early
fall 2005, followed by an 18-month period of construction.
Although several buildings have been renovated, the 60,000-square-foot
state-of-the-art Wellness Center will be the first new building to be
constructed on campus in 40 years. The Center will consist of several
technologically equipped learning spaces for conferences, seminars and
classroom instruction. It will allow faculty and students to develop health
and wellness education modules that address the specific curricular needs of
the CNR communities as well as further the larger national goals of preventing
major chronic illnesses, injuries and infectious diseases. Healthy lifestyle
habits will be taught to students at all CNR campuses, and they will be
encouraged to become models of wellness.
The Wellness Center will be built at the southwest corner of the CNR
campus along Liberty Avenue and Meadow Lane. It will serve as a gateway for
the College when seen from Pelham Road and anchors the campus when approached
from the northeast along the promenade known as Maura Lawn.
A significant section of the Wellness Center will be built into the ground
to take advantage of the area's sloping topography and to minimize the visual
impact on the neighbors of the Residence Park Association. The building's two
most unique features will be its Contemplation Roof Garden, which will be
created on top of the below-ground pool enclosure, and the Meditation Room
that will extend from the corner of the building as if suspended in midair
among a grove of gingko and oak trees.
The Wellness Center makes good on the College's promise to its students to
provide a state-of-the-art fitness center. It includes a gymnasium equipped
with arena-style bleachers for 1,500 people, competition-size basketball court
and volleyball court; an interior running track suspended above the gym floor;
and a six-lane NCAA competition swimming pool, lockers and showers. The 3,500-
square-foot fitness center includes a weight and equipment room, aerobics and
dance studio, Meditation Room and Contemplation Roof Garden.
The former sports building-torn down six years ago-was constructed in the
1920s. The inclusion of fitness and swimming in the program was unusual for
its time at a women's college. CNR believed that fitness was integral to
educating the whole person and that women were just as entitled to it as men.
Despite the lack of a sports building, the CNR Physical Education Department
has continued to offer a diverse array of classes for students from cross-
country running to boxing. CNR has also continued its intercollegiate
competition programs and NCAA Division III affiliation by utilizing space at
facilities and neighboring schools.
Incorporated into the first floor of the new building will be the
College's Student Health Services Department. Health Services offers health
programs, provides preventive health care, treats acute health problems and
makes referrals. The School of Nursing will be a vital component of many
Wellness Center programs.
Marie Serina, Director of College Health Services, said, "The Wellness
Center will give us a base where we can bring together the community and
educate them on how to lead a healthy lifestyle." Health Services, which is
now located in a small house that will be replaced to make way for the newly
expanded Center, will provide opportunities for conferences, classrooms, and
seminar activities for students and the community-at-large.
Designed by Ikon.5 Architects of Princeton, NJ, the architecture of the
Wellness Center is itself a metaphor-"a metaphor for wellness that reflects
the philosophical underpinnings of the project," said Joe Tattoni, Design
The fact that the Wellness Center will be a "Green" building, eligible for
a silver level certificate by the U.S. Green Business Council under its
Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Green Building Rating
System(R), presented challenges for the architect, particularly its recreation
component. Mr. Tattoni explained, "Natural daylight is the enemy of
competition swimming and basketball-that's why gymnasiums are windowless
boxes." The architect solved the problem by using skylights in the
Contemplation Roof Garden and variegated glass to help diffuse the light in
the gym. To take advantage of one of the area's natural resources, the
Wellness Center will be built almost entirely out of Westchester granite like
much of the CNR campus.
The $25 million funding for the Wellness Center is part of the College's
Capital Campaign. By the end of the Campaign, the College will have raised
$70 million, which also supported the renovation of the Mother Irene Gill
Library and the refurbishment of the Holy Family Chapel. The renovated Mother
Irene Gill Library dramatically improves academic life at CNR with expanded
access to technology for faculty and students on all campuses while the
refurbishment of the Holy Family Chapel provides students with a beautiful
The first Catholic college for women in New York State, The College of New
Rochelle was founded in 1904 by the Ursuline Order and today is one of 60
women's colleges in the nation. It comprises the all-women School of Arts &
Sciences, and three schools which admit women and men: the School of New
Resources (for adult learners), the School of Nursing and the Graduate School.
The main campus of the College is located in lower Westchester County, 16
miles north of New York City. The College maintains five other campus
locations in New York City. Visit the College's website at
SOURCE The College of New Rochelle