McDaniel College unveils student center renovation
Renamed the Roj Student Center for 1970 alumni Mary Lynn Durham and Bill Roj, who supported the project with a $5 million gift. The $11 million renovation modernizes McDaniel’s student center located in the middle of campus and is the first overall renovation of the structure since it was built in 1978.
McDaniel College unveils its student center renovation in preparation for the Fall 2020 semester along with a new name, Roj Student Center.
The $11 million renovation modernizes McDaniel’s student center located in the middle of campus and includes brand-new student spaces, as well as offices for the Center for Experience and Opportunity, Student Engagement and Office of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion. Other highlights are an updated fast-casual restaurant concept creating additional take-out menu items on campus, a green rooftop terrace and a new College Store. The renovation added 2,328 square feet to the structure for a total of 40,014 square feet.
The Roj Student Center has been named in honor of Mary Lynn Durham and her husband, Bill Roj, whose $5 million leadership gift made the renovation possible. Both are 1970 alumni of the college. Mary Lynn Durham is an attorney and currently serves as vice chair of the McDaniel College Board of Trustees, while Bill Roj served as chairman, president and CEO of ERICO, a leading global manufacturer and marketer of superior engineered electrical and fastening products for electrical, mechanical and civil applications.
Other six- and seven-figure gifts for the project came from several current and emeritus trustees, including George Benson; James Francis, a 1984 alumnus, and his wife, Dianne; Board Chair Otto Guenther, a 1963 alumnus, and his wife, Jan; former Board Chair Martin K.P. Hill; Dr. Chitrachedu Naganna and his wife, Vimala; Donald Mosby Rembert, Sr., a 1961 alumnus, and his wife, Judith, a 1960 alumna; Robert “Robin” Salomon, III, and his wife, Sarah; Carroll Yingling, a 1968 alumnus, and his wife, Susan Morales Yingling, a 1970 alumna who also earned a master’s degree in 2000; and William Westervelt, a 1971 alumnus, and his wife, Laura.
Construction began on the three-story building at the end of May 2019. Both the architect, Marshall Craft Associates of Baltimore, and contractor, Whiting-Turner Contracting Company of Baltimore, worked throughout the COVID-19 pandemic to make sure that the building would be ready for students to utilize when they arrived on campus for the fall semester. The full renovation is slated to be complete in early October.
This is the first overall renovation of the student center since it was built in 1978 as a contemporary, three-tiered “nonbuilding” to link to the surrounding architecture and connect the college’s Elderdice Hall and Rouzer Hall along with Englar Dining Hall and Harlow Pool. It was formerly named as a result of a gift from the family of Alonzo Decker, the son of the co-founder of Black & Decker who served as the company’s president and chief executive officer.