By Aleena Paul
On Saturday Oct. 29, the newly renovated Social Sciences building was formally dedicated as Lippman Hall in honor of Robert G. Lippman ‘50.
The dedication ceremony thanked the lead supporters of the renovations, Jim Lippman ‘79 and his wife Linda, as well as accompanying donors and members of the faculty and staff involved in the redesign and construction of the new space.
In his address, Chairman of the Board of Trustees Mark Walsh ‘76 thanked the Lippman family for their “commitment to education, commitment to the campus, and commitment to the future of this school.”
President Stephen Ainlay cited the design of Lippman Hall as an example of “what we are characteristically doing in all our buildings at this point—we are putting education on display so that you can actually see the learning process that goes on.”
“It is my family’s hope that Lippman Hall will allow future generations of Union students to forge important and sometimes transformational relationships with Union’s incredible faculty,” stated Jim Lippman.
In his keynote address, Robert Lippman spoke of the relationships and lifelong friendships that he made at Union.
“It’s propitious that this dedication is done today on homecoming, ‘cause this is home,” affirmed Lippman.
The dedication and ribbon cutting ceremony was followed immediately by a reception and open house staffed by students and faculty. The open house highlighted student and faculty research and projects, and provided guests with an opportunity to tour the new classrooms and offices.
“It is great to share this experience with all the alumni and the Lippman family,” said David Leavitt ‘12, an economics major who presented his work with the federal VITA program.
Lippman Hall, home to the departments of economics, history, political science and sociology, features seven modern classrooms, 45 faculty and staff offices, common rooms for receptions and exhibits and new spaces for student and faculty interaction.
Economics professor Eshragh Motahar stated that the redesign committee hoped to provide “public spaces that are inviting, welcoming and conducive to interaction between students and faculty, and across disciplines.”
Professor Zoe Oxley of the political science department encouraged students to make use of the new study rooms and stressed the openness of the building after hours. “We want this building to be a building of learning 24/7. Before, the old Social Sciences building just wasn’t very friendly and accommodating for students. Now there are spaces for students to hang out in, and study and meet with friends and do their work in. So I’m happy to see that students are already starting to take advantage of the building,” she said.