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Liollio Architecture's Allie Beck Achieves Architectural Licensure

Mez Joseph

Allie Beck, AIA

Allie Beck, AIA

Liollio Architecture is pleased to congratulate Allie Beck, AIA, for earning her architectural licensure and becoming a member of the American Institute of Architects (AIA), a professional organization for architects in the United States. A registered architect must complete an internship and pass a rigorous series of examinations offered by official architectural registration boards in the United States and Canada. The Liollio team celebrates Allie and her achievement. 

A Texas native, Allie received her undergraduate degree from Texas A&M and Master of Architecture degree from Clemson University. She relocated to Charleston in 2016 to join the Liollio team as Project Designer. Since then, her project work has ranged in size and scope, strengthening her design, attention to detail, communication and collaborative skills. Her recent work includes the Children’s Museum of the Lowcountry Play Pavilion, USC South Caroliniana Library renovation, a number of historic preservation projects at Historic Brattonsville, as well as Discovery Place Nature, a nature museum in Charlotte NC.

College of Charleston set to embark on a $50M renovation of major campus building

Mez Joseph

The College of Charleston’s Albert Simons Center for the Arts will undergo extensive renovations beginning in the spring of 2020. Brad Nettles/Staff - Brad Nettles bnettles@postandcourier.com

By Adam Parker aparker@postandcourier.com
The Post & Courier
Aug 18, 2019

The College of Charleston’s Albert Simons Center, home to the School of the Arts, will undergo a $50 million makeover next year.

What will the final product look like? No one knows. 

The team at Liollio Architecture has been reconceiving the interior of the 80,000-square-foot Simons Center for a few years now, but no clear exterior designs have been produced yet “because there’s no agreement on what outside should look like,” said Valerie Morris, dean of the School of the Arts.

A few broad concepts are clear: The building needs a better main entrance and lobby; it needs to complement the adjacent Marion and Wayland H. Cato Jr. Center for the Arts, which opened in 2010; and it needs to fit into the campus aesthetic.

Incoming freshmen at the College of Charleston visit the Albert Simons Center for the Arts on Monday, August 12, 2019. The building, located on St. Philips Street, soon will be getting a makeover. Brad Nettles/Staff - Brad Nettles bnettles@postandcourier.com

The modern red brick building on St. Philips Street sits at the end of a campus thoroughfare and is highly visible. The new design should acknowledge the need to create a welcoming front door and public space, and to connect with adjacent buildings, said Liollio lead architect Jennifer Charzewski.

“We want a design that celebrates the creativity of the arts,” she said.

When the College of Charleston’s Albert Simons Center was built 40 years ago, around 800 students made use of the building. Today, that number is more like 5,000.

The availability of the building’s performance venues helped convince Gian Carlo Menotti in the mid-1970s to locate Spoleto Festival USA in Charleston. As a result, the Simons Center quickly became “one of the primary places the public interacts with the college,” Charzewski said.

The building’s renovation has been a long time in the making. 

In 1994, the college introduced plans to upgrade the School of the Arts facilities and engaged architect Robert Stern to oversee the effort.

He conceived a neoclassical structure to match Randolph Hall across the street, but the Board of Architectural Review wanted something more modern, recalled Morris, the school’s dean. Then, residents of the neighborhood and others insisted on Stern’s approach. In the end, the college engaged Stevens & Wilkinson, which operated out of Columbia, to complete the $27 million project.

By then costs had gone up, so officials divided the School of the Arts renovation effort into two projects. The Simons Center would have to wait for the completion of another big renovation project: the $80 million Rita Liddy Hollings Science Center and Physicians Auditorium.

But all’s well that ends well, Morris said. The Joint Bond Review Committee late last month approved the plan to finance the renovation project with $45 million in proceeds from the issuance of academic and Administrative Facilities bonds. Another $5 million will come from nonrecurring state appropriations, revenues from college fees and, mostly, capital project institutional funds.

A woman makes her way down the second floor hallway of the College of Charleston’s Albert Simons Center for the Arts on Monday, August 12, 2019. Brad Nettles/Staff - Brad Nettles bnettles@postandcourier.com

Student fees and tuition are not expected to go up because of the project, according to the college, although the Capital Improvement Fee, which is derived from a portion of tuition, has been increased three times in the last five years, from $781 per student per semester to $878 per student per semester.

Morris said she expects to move out of the Simons Center next summer and use the Harbor Walk buildings near the S.C. Aquarium for administrative offices, classrooms and more. The Chapel Theatre on Calhoun Street, Sottile Theatre on George Street and local church sanctuaries will provide performance space while the three Simons Center venues are shut down.

(Meanwhile, the Sottile Theatre is also undergoing renovation. It closed in February for $4.7 million in stage upgrades, and is slated to reopen in time for the 2020 Spoleto Festival.)

The revised interior of the Simons Center will include a new black box theater, state-of-the-art classrooms and upgraded infrastructure components such as bathrooms, HVAC and power stations. Heating and cooling problems will be resolved, along with the mold issue, Morris said.

Charzewski said the project also will upgrade mechanical and electrical systems while incorporating sustainable energy and flood protection. 

The renovation, she said, will change the face of the St. Philip Street corridor. Liollio is partnering on the renovation with Minneapolis-based HGA Architects, which specializes in arts, education and civic projects.

The courtyard at the College of Charleston’s Albert Simons Center for the Arts fronts St. Philip Street and likely will be transformed by the upcoming renovation project led by Liollio Architects. Brad Nettles/Staff - Brad Nettles bnettles@postandcourier.com

Rodney Lee Rogers, an adjunct theater professor, said the new black box theater — a small, square performance space — will provide welcomed flexibility. The smaller, malleable venue will enable students to rehearse more easily, to experiment and to stage their own plays, Rogers said. 

“I think a black box for training is the most versatile kind of set-up you can have,” he said. “You can do a lot of things quickly ... and it’s more about performance.”

It’s great to have the Sottile Theatre and access to other big stages in town, but that’s not what students need most, Rogers said.

“For most actors, they’re going to be cutting their teeth in more adaptive smaller spaces, because they’re not going to get into the bigger spaces for a while.”

Currently, the Simons Center is about 80,000 square feet, Charzewski said. The project team will renovate 65,000 square feet, rebuild 15,000 square feet and add 10,000 square feet.

The third and final state-level review conducted by the State Fiscal and Accountability Authority on Aug. 13 was the last hurdle cleared, she said. The city’s Board of Architectural Review will have a chance to scrutinize the plans.

The work likely will begin in the summer of 2020 with the temporary relocation of the art school, followed by a groundbreaking in the fall of 2020, according to Paul Patrick, chief of staff to the president. School officials hope the project will be finished in time for the 2022-23 academic year.

Meanwhile, the College of Charleston will consider other pressing capital projects, President Andrew Hsu said. A campus that’s 250 years old needs constant attention, he noted.

DISASTER RESPONSE: INNOVATIVE PROBLEM-SOLVING COURTS AT THE COMMUNITY LEVEL

Mez Joseph

Benjamin Ward, AIA, EDAC, LEED AP, of Grace Hebert Curtis Architects & Liollio’s Aaron Bowman, AIA, SEED, LEED AP, coauthored an article about Resilience and AIA South Carolina’s Disaster Assistance Program that was published in YAF Connection, the AIA Young Architect Forum’s bimonthly publication. READ ARTICLE HERE or by following the link above.

Liollio Elevates Michael Edwards, AIA, LEED AP to Associate Principal

Mez Joseph

Liollio Architecture is pleased to announce the elevation of Michael Edwards, AIA, LEED AP to Associate Principal. Michael received his Master of Architecture and Bachelor in Design from Clemson University, where he also studied at the Clemson Architectural Center in Charleston and abroad at the Charles E. Daniel Center for Building and Urban Studies in Genoa, Italy.

For more than 21 years, Michael has had the privilege of designing health, community, commercial and residential projects. As Liollio’s Health & Wellness Leader, he is passionate about improving environments within our community. His current projects range from major medical center renovations and additions to the design of new medical offices, tenant upfits, urban infills, learning environments, hospice and palliative care, senior and adult day facilities, and veteran enrichments.

Michael believes that all architecture should enhance the human experience, and if designed thoughtfully, buildings can heal the spirit, improve health and impact the human psyche. “Early in my career, I experienced the power of design as my grandmother’s ten-year battle with Alzheimer’s led to her becoming one of the patients in my first hospice facility. Intimately involved in her daily care, I observed first-hand the impact of environment on her health as she shifted from nursing home to hospital to hospice facility. Those personal experiences have guided me in every design, fueling my passion for experiential and healing design in every project.”

Liollio Awarded Multiple 2019 Design Awards by AIA South Atlantic Region

Mez Joseph

Liollio Architecture is honored to announce that the 2019 American Institute of Architects South Atlantic Region (AIA SAR) has recognized Liollio projects with three Regional Design Awards. Hampton Health Clinic in Varnville, SC received a New Construction/Substantial Renovation Honor Award. Brighton Park Swim Club in Summerville, SC and James Island Town Hall in James Island, SC both received New Construction/Substantial Renovation Merit Awards. Because these projects were the result of team work and collaboration with clients, Liollio would like to extend sincere gratitude to Hampton County, SC, WestRock and The Town of James Island, SC, along with their project team partners.

Jury Comments:
James Island Town Hall
“This quotation of a simple regional form creates a warm community expression.”
Brighton Park Swim Club “This project was admirable for its modesty and directness.”
Hampton Health Clinic “This modest quiet clinic is designed with great sensitivity to patients and to creating a new warm and comfortable community asset.”

The AIA South Atlantic Region is comprised of three state chapters: GA, NC and SC and is home to more than 5,500 members. Events surrounding the 2019 AIA SAR Annual Design Conference, themed the ASPIRE Experience, took place in Asheville, NC over the course of three days, April 14 to April 16. A new type of collaborative conference, ASPIRE brought together the design and construction community to share stories and influence designers to create a better future. Breaking the mold of the traditional event and taking full advantage of the location, AIA SAR utilized the architecture, community and surroundings of Asheville to create this immersive environment of inspiration and design celebration.

42ND ANNUAL COOPER RIVER BRIDGE RUN

Mez Joseph

We are proud of our 2019 42nd Annual Cooper River Bridge Run Liollio Team! Cheers to an awesome group! Congratulations to all who participated in this year's race! For a look at this year’s official winners, visit https://bridgerun.com/.

Louis Waring, Jr. Senior Center Grand Opening & Ribbon Cutting

Mez Joseph

Don't miss the Louis Waring, Jr. Senior Center Grand Opening & Ribbon Cutting Ceremony on March 5. Mayor John J. Tecklenburg, City Council of Charleston and Roper St. Francis Healthcare invite you to attend the Grand Opening and Ribbon Cutting Ceremony for the Louis Waring, Jr. Senior Center on Tuesday, March 5, 2019, 12:30 p.m. at 2001 Henry Tecklenburg Drive, Charleston SC. Tours of the facility and open house activities will follow the ribbon cutting. For more info visit here.

Ralph H. Johnson VA Medical Center Prepares to Open New Emergency Department

Mez Joseph

Ralph H. Johnson VA Medical Center’s fully renovated and expanded Emergency Department will be open to Veterans next week. This project more than tripled the square footage in their Emergency Department, adding nine new bays, an additional nurses station, a workroom for staff and privacy for our Veterans. Liollio is proud to have been part of the team on this important , helping the VA to expand access to care for Veterans in their new space.

Roper St. Francis Opens First Medical Office Building in Berkeley County

Mez Joseph

By Rob Way | November 30, 2018 at 7:06 AM EST - Updated November 30 at 7:24 AM

BERKELEY COUNTY, SC (WCSC) - For the first time, Roper St. Francis is expanding its medical reach to Berkeley County.

On Friday, the healthcare provider is opening its new medical office building in Summerville. Until now, they only had an urgent care center in the area.

The grand opening event is from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. on Friday. The offices are at 300 Callen Boulevard in Summerville behind all the major construction right near where 176 meets 17-A. Those who stop by can tour the building, grab some free food, and even pop in to a free health fair.

This state-of-the-art, three-story building will house a variety of specialists, including breast surgeons, orthopedic surgeons and OB/GYN physicians. Medical services here will range from dermatology to cardiology.

Jennifer Crawford will be the Chief Nursing Officer at the future Roper St. Francis Berkeley Hospital. She says this new medical office building was designed with the patients in mind.

"We've looked at all the attributes down to the color scheme matching the natural environment, because there’s proof that’s therapeutic in the healing process,” Crawford said. “We’ve added three elevators. One at every proximity to the building, so there's no long walking distances."

The medical offices are set to start seeing patients on Monday, Dec. 10. The healthcare provider is also building a hospital next door which is set to open in October 2019.

Copyright 2018 WCSC. All rights reserved.

James Island Town Hall Open House

Mez Joseph

James Island Town Hall Officials made the new location at 1122 Dills Bluff Road their home on July 30th. One month later, on Thursday, August 30th, they invited the public to join them in celebrating their new space with an Open House. Music, food and refreshments were provided free of charge to all guests. Smoky Oak, Dave ‘N’ Dubs Hot Dogs and Pelican’s SnoBalls were a few of the vendors who contributed to making the evening such a special event. View the gallery of images above to see the amazing turnout and the fun had by all. A special thank you to Diana Deaver for her eye in capturing the event on film, and to the Town of James Island Officials for hosting such a wonderful event!

Richland Library St. Andrews Featured in 2018 Library Design Showcase

Mez Joseph

Richland Library St. Andrews was featured in the 2018 Library Design Showcase, American Libraries Magazine’s annual celebration of new and renovated libraries. These shining examples of innovative architectural feats address user needs in unique, interesting and effective ways. Renovations and expansions continued to dominate submissions, showing how communities are finding novel ways to conserve and honor existing spaces while moving them well into the 21st century. View the showcase here.

James Island Officials Move Into New Town Hall

Mez Joseph

By Alissa Holmes, Reporter/MMJ/Live5 News

Town of James Island officials have moved into the new Town Hall and we are excited to attend the Grand Opening Celebration -coming soon - Thursday, August 30, 2018 from 6 - 8pm at 1122 Dills Bluff Road. Join us for an evening of fun! Watch the Live5 News coverage here or by clicking on the image above.

Vote for Liollio in Post & Courier's 2018 Charleston's Choice Awards!

Mez Joseph

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Voting has begun for Post & Courier’s 2018 Charleston's Choice Awards and Liollio has been nominated for Architecture Firm under the Professional Services category! Cast your votes in a wide array of categories now through July 25th. Please support Liollio with your vote by visiting https://bit.ly/2sm64at and scrolling down to the Architecture Firm category. Thank you in advance for your support! #CharlestonsChoice #Architecture #Culture #Context #Collaboration

Post & Courier: SC Welcome Centers Getting Some Overdue Attention to Impress Travelers

Mez Joseph

By Dave Munday
dmunday@postandcourier.com
Jun 23, 2018

When it comes to tourism, never underestimate the importance of a restroom. Providing public restrooms and making them easier for visitors to find has been the topic of much discussion in Charleston.

Public facilities with innovative designs can be a visitor attraction in themselves, as noted by the annual International Toilet Tourism Awards. The awards by MyTravelResearch.com were created "to show the close link between innovative, clean toilets with great design and a successful local tourism economy — or as we like to call it the trickle down effect."

For example, a public restroom in Lucas, Kan., called Toilet Bowl Plaza, is noted as a big visitor draw. The building itself was designed in the shape of a toilet, and the inside is covered with mosaics and quirky creations by local artists.

The public restrooms at the welcome centers along the major arteries leading into South Carolina have been a prime focus lately of state tourism officials. The nine official welcome centers play a key role in the state's economic development, according to Duane Parrish, director of the S.C. Department of Parks, Recreation and Tourism.

"Over 80 percent of visitors to South Carolina come by car," Parrish said. "First impressions mean everything." Eight welcome centers ring the Palmetto State, capturing visitors coming from every direction. The other one is near the middle. When Parrish took over PRT seven years ago, he said, the welcome centers were pretty shoddy and unimpressive — restrooms, vending machines, a small space to pick up some brochures or ask a question. They were only open five days a week, closed Mondays and Tuesdays to save money.

The Department of Transportation turned over maintenance to PRT in July 2014. The tourism agency got about $4.5 million from DOT to maintain the centers this year, according to DOT's budget report. The restrooms were cleaned up, landscaping and flowers added. That was just the beginning.

There are no plans to make the restrooms worthy of a Toilet Award, but the centers themselves are being overhauled. Two have been completely rebuilt in the last two years, costing about $4.5 million each. One is at Hardeeville on Interstate 95 just north of the South Carolina-Georgia state line, replacing a center that opened in 1978. The other is at Fort Mill on I-77 south of the North Carolina border, replacing one that opened in 1981.

The new Hardeeville welcome center, on I-95 just over the border from Georgia, is much more spacious and high-tech than the old one, and the exterior reflects the colors of Lowcountry sandy soil and beach sand. Provided/SCPRT/Perry Baker

The exterior of the rebuilt Fort Mill welcome center, on I-77 south of the North Carolina border, was designed to resemble the clay color variances of the Catawba pottery native to the area. Provided/Paul Warchol/Liollio Architecture

Construction on a new Dillon welcome center in the Pee Dee region, on I-95 just south of the North Carolina border, is set to start later this year. The current Dillon center opened in 1973.

The newer centers are more spacious and modern than their predecessors. Rather than just racks of brochures advertising the state's attractions, high-definition screens on the walls stream live webcams from around the state. The exteriors are designed to reflect the local culture. For instance, the new Dillon center looks like a farm house typical of the rural, tobacco areas of the Pee Dee.

5b2baf74bd526.image.jpg

The new Dillon welcome center, on I-95 south of the North Carolina border, will resemble a farm house typical of the rural, tobacco areas of the Pee Dee. Provided rendering/Jeff Lewis Architect

Parrish said the goal is not only to let travelers know about the state's attractions but to give them the impression that South Carolina is on the cutting edge. "It's not only important for tourism but also for economic development," he said. "We don't want them to look dated."

About 3.5 million visitors a year step inside the welcome centers, according to PRT. The agency spends about $1.5 million a year to staff them with trained travel counselors versed in South Carolina history and culture.

The counselors welcome visitors, answer questions, give out coupons and occasionally make reservations. The department says its counselors made about $2 million in hotel reservations last year, even though the centers are equipped with wireless Internet service so travelers can do it themselves over their phones. “It’s a chance for us to have that personal touch," Parrish said. "No matter how great technology gets, nothing will ever replace the 'human touch.'

"Businesses that cater to tourists can put their brochures in the center for free. PRT reports about $88,000 a year from selling spaces for bigger ads.

For instance, the Santee welcome center — the one near the center of the state on I-95 south, near I-26 — is the closest to Charleston, and also one of the smallest. The town of Mount Pleasant has a poster on the glass front door. It says, "Where Rush Hour is a pleasant surprise, but still leaves you speechless." There's a photo of some dolphins a driver might see while crawling over the Ravenel Bridge or Shem Creek.

Around the corner, on the path leading to the women's restroom, Drayton Hall advertises its new visitors center. Inside, a wall panel advertising North Charleston has a photo of the boardwalk at Riverfront Park with the slogan “always take the scenic route.”

The tourism department doesn't get any money from the vending machines. Those are reserved for entrepreneurs through the S.C. Commission for the Blind's Business Enterprise program, which includes hiring drivers for those who can't see well enough to drive. The policy is a federal mandate under the Randolph-Sheppard Act.

It would seem the state could make some extra money selling T-shirts or other souvenirs, but that's not allowed along interstate highways under the 2012 Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century Act.

Reach Dave Munday at 843-937-5553.

Michael Edwards & Elizabeth Bernat Lead Roundtable at 2018 NANASP/NCOA Conference

Mez Joseph

Liollio's Michael Edwards, Associate and Health & Wellness Leader, along with Elizabeth Bernat, Director of Senior Services at Roper Saint Francis Healthcare, led a series of roundtable discussions at the National Association of Nutrition and Aging Services Programs (NANASP) -  National Council on Aging (NCOA) 2018 Conference in Charleston this month. The roundtables focused on the design and community engagement process for the Louis Waring, Jr. Senior Center, a Public/Private partnership between the City of Charleston and Roper Saint Francis Healthcare, to open this Fall.

The NANSP/NCOA Conference is an annual conference hosted by the National Association of Nutrition and Aging Services Programs (NANSP) and the National Council on Aging (NCOA) National Institute of Senior Centers (NISC). The conference brings together leaders from senior center and aging organizations as well as officials from the SC Department of Aging and Disabilities, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and the AARP Foundation.

Michael Edwards is the Liollio Project Manager of the Louis Waring, Jr. Senior Center located in West Ashley. Elizabeth Bernat is the Executive Director of the Lowcountry Senior Center and future Louis Waring, Jr. Senior Center. For more information about the Louis Waring, Jr. Senior Center, visit Liollio on ISSUU or view the Designing for Senior Community & Wellness Brochure.

Liollio’s Alison Dawson Awarded 2018 AIA South Carolina Presidential Citation

Mez Joseph

Liollio is pleased to announce that the 2018 American Institute of Architects South Carolina Chapter has recognized Alison Dawson, AIA, with the 2018 Presidential Citation.

This prestigious award, presented annually by the AIA SC President, is given to members who have provided exemplary service to the membership in advancing the profession. Alison was awarded this Citation in recognition of her leadership and initiative to organize the mobile art classroom community service project team through the 2018 AIASC Leadership Academy.

A native of Charleston, Alison earned her Bachelor of Arts in Architecture at Clemson University and Bachelor of Architecture at North Carolina State University, graduating with honors. Alison’s work at Liollio has varied, strengthening her design, attention to detail, communication and collaborative skills. Her recent work includes University of South Carolina historic preservation, Charleston International Airport TRIP and preservation/renovation to Charleston’s Old City Jail. Alison was honored as one of Charleston Regional Business Journal’s 2016 Forty Under 40 recipients.

Liollio Architecture Awarded Multiple 2018 AIA South Carolina Awards

Mez Joseph

Liollio Architecture is honored to announce that the 2018 American Institute of Architects South Carolina Chapter has recognized three Liollio projects with four State Design Awards. Richland Library Ballentine, in Irmo SC, received a New Construction Honor Award and an Interior Architecture Merit Award. Hampton County Health Clinic, in Varnville SC, received a New Construction Merit Award. South Carolina Welcome Center at Fort Mill, in York SC, received a New Construction Citation Award. Because these projects were the result of deep collaboration with clients, Liollio would like to extend special thanks to South Carolina Department of Parks, Recreation & Tourism, South Carolina Department of Health & Environmental Control, Hampton County and Richland Library.

Events surrounding the AIASC Annual Design Conference took place in Lake City SC over the course of three days, from Wednesday, April 18 to Friday, April 20. This year, AIASC partnered with Lake City’s annual community-wide arts festival and competition known as ArtFields, artfieldssc.org. This year's theme was Community: By Design and focused on the power of art and design in creative placemaking. The Design Awards program and many other sessions were open to the community. Speakers included Michael Ford, Associate AIA, Emilie Taylor Welty, Dan Pitera, FAIA, and Trey Trahan, FAIA. The awards were juried by New Orleans LA-based juries and presented at a Design Awards Celebration held on Thursday, April 19 at The Bean Market during the AIASC Design Conference.

Liollio Architecture Elevates Andy Clark, AIA, to Principal

Mez Joseph

Andy Clark, AIA, LEED AP, Principal

Andy Clark, AIA, LEED AP, Principal

It’s an honor to be part of a talented and dedicated team of design professionals that take pride in their work and make even the most challenging days fun and rewarding.
— Andy Clark, AIA, LEED AP, Principal

Liollio Architecture is pleased to announce the elevation of Andy Clark, AIA, LEED AP, to Principal. Liollio celebrates Andy’s accomplishments and is proud to have him as a firm leader!

Andy is passionate about design and the value it brings to our clients through successful collaborations. As part of Liollio's third generation of ownership, Andy leads the educational market and has a diverse portfolio spanning educational, municipal, commercial and healthcare. “It’s an honor to be part of a talented and dedicated team of design professionals that take pride in their work and make even the most challenging days fun and rewarding.” A graduate of Clemson University, with a Master of Architecture and Bachelor of Science in Design, Andy is currently serving as the State President of AIA South Carolina, where he organized the Community: by design Conference in conjunction with ArtFields in Lake City. He has served on the Clemson Architectural Foundation Board, volunteers as a student mentor, and is a Past President of AIA Charleston, where he co-founded a free public lecture series to elevate the design dialogue in our community.

Open for Business: The Citadel Produces Military Leaders, Yes, But Even More Pursue Civilian Careers

Mez Joseph

Construction of Bastin Hall, future home of The Citadel's business school, is set to start in June.

By Dave Munday dmunday@postandcourier.com
The Post & Courier Mar 25, 2018

The Citadel’s mission to produce ethical business leaders is paying off, as the department is in the midst of a major makeover.

The expansion includes:
• A new name. The department was renamed The Tommy and Victoria Baker School of Business last year after a major donation from Baker, a 1972 business school graduate who founded the Baker Motor Co., automotive empire.
• A new home. The department is preparing to move from Bond Hall, where it shares space with administration and biology classes, to a new building called Bastin Hall, in the fall of 2019.
• A new dean. Michael Weeks, dean of the Dunham School of Business at Houston Baptist University, a former Air Force pilot and an accomplished violinist whose specialty is strategic innovation, will take over the helm at The Citadel on July 1.
• New specialties. This year, the Citadel began offering new programs focusing on finance, entrepreneurship and the supply chain.

About one-third of the graduates from the Charleston military college go into the military; the rest pursue civilian careers. The school has produced a long list of outstanding business leaders in its 175-year history, going back to James Coker, an 1856 graduate who founded Carolina Fiber Co., Sonoco Products and Coker College in Hartsville.

Baker is one of the more visible contemporary graduates in the Charleston area. He declined to reveal the amount of his donation last year, but it’s been called the largest in the history of the business school.

Bastin Hall is named after Rick Bastin, a 1965 business school graduate whose Florida car dealerships included the largest Mercedes-Benz dealership on the East Coast.

He donated $6 million to get the building started in September 2016. Work is expected to start this summer, near the Holliday Alumni Center across from Johnson Hagood Stadium.

All cadets — whether heading for military or business careers — are drilled in the school’s core values of honor, duty and respect. That’s a selling point in today business world, according to Iordanis Karagiannidis — often called "Dr. K" around campus — the business school’s associate dean.

"I think that is a strong selling point, when you look at the news, the lack of ethics in different businesses," Karagiannidis said.

The new dean agrees.

"The primary attraction of the position for me was The Citadel's commitment to its mission of developing leaders with core values of duty, honor and respect," Weeks said. "One only needs a quick scan of the current headlines to see that our community and nation require leaders of character at every level."

Out of 551 cadets who graduated in 2017, 191 — or 34 percent — were business majors, according to a report from the school.

A number of prominent business leaders also have earned their master's degrees at The Citadel, which allowed MBA candidates to complete the program entirely online two years ago.

Liollio Architecture, in association with ikon.5 architects, is currently working with The Citadel to complete the Bastin Hall project.