Following four years of floor-to-ceiling renovations and "spiffing up," Davis & Elkins College alumni, board of directors, staff, professors and students gathered Friday for the official dedication of the Myles Center for the Arts on the school's campus.
The center is named for longtime board of trustees member June Myles. Her financial support, hands-on planning and consultation helped make the vision for the center a reality, officials said.
The Myles Center for the Arts is comprised of three key areas, including the Hermanson Center, Harper-McNeeley Auditorium and the Paull Gallery.
The Inter-Mountain photo by Beth Christian Broschart
Davis & Elkins College President G.T. ‘Buck’ Smith prepares to present D&E Board of Trustees member June Myles with a plaque Friday at the dedication of the Myles Center for the Arts. The center was named for Myles, whose generous financial support and hands-on planning and consultation made the vision of the center a reality.
The renovation project included interior architectural upgrades to the facility's lower level, creating an art department consisting of office space, technology labs and studio space.
The 1,200-seat Harper-McNeeley Auditorium was completely renovated with new seating - ranging in size from 19 to 24 inches - and also new carpeting, new lighting and a new Bose sound system.
The auditorium lobby has been refurbished to include office space and a retail center for the Augusta Heritage Center. The area also includes exhibit space with the Paull Gallery. The restrooms have also been redesigned.
Infrastructure upgrades include a sprinkler system and a new boiler and chiller system.
Myles said she hopes everyone is happy to see the rejuvenation of the arts at D&E.
"My mother loved music and my father liked to draw and paint when he had time," Myles said. "We never took regular vacations, but used to go to Abington, Va. to see a play. I think they would be pleased with the renovations."
Myles said people will enjoy the renovated center.
"My hope is that all in the D&E community will learn to love the arts in whatever capacity they choose," Myles said. "I also hope those in the Randolph County community will take advantage of the updated facility."
D&E Chancellor Dr. Mike Mihalyo said the Myles Center For the Arts is an extraordinary place for learning.
"Over the past few weeks, the facility has been used for learning, for Mountain State Forest Festival events and for arts students from D&E and the community," Mihalyo said. "D&E board members had the opportunity to see the premier of (the colllege's new dance troupe) Appalachian Spirit. These folks were inspired partly due to the sprucing up of the center."
The Mills Group of Morgantown served as the overseers for the design and construction of the project.
Contact Beth Christian Broschart by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.