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Exciting Plans for the Renovation and Expansion of the Peter Marshall French Student Center

An exciting plan is unfolding to renovate and expand the Peter Marshall French Student Center. Dedicated in 1978 by Trustee Emeritus Shirley French and family in memory of their son Peter Marshall French, the center has long served the Governor’s community with just minor modifications and limited expansion throughout the years. However, our campus community has significantly outgrown the building as it stands now and a reimagined, renovated, and expanded student center is a key funding priority within the fundraising campaign With True Courage, The Campaign for Governor’s.

“The project is motivated by two primary opportunities: first, to create a place that is a hub of campus activity and engagement for the community. A welcoming place where students feel comfortable, either as a group or alone, knowing that they will find others to connect with or a comfortable spot where they can relax and recharge. Either way, it will be a central location where students from all corners of the campus can come to connect, debate, laugh, play, meet, and relax” said Jed Wartman, Dean of Students. Wartman has been working in collaboration with the Academy’s Director of Student Activities, student and school leadership, and TMS architects to help develop a renovation and expansion design that provides the maximum flexibility for students and cocurricular student programming.

The renovation will expand and improve functional space with multiple common areas that are defined by movable walls. On any given evening the space could host three separate events and then be reconfigured the next evening to accommodate one large event for the entire community. A new café and grill will feature an additional gathering place and offer a variety of hot food options for students as well.

Wartman pointed out that the second motivation for the renovation and expansion is to “directly meet the needs of our day student community, to create a home base on campus that is accessible and comfortable. A place where students can easily access lockers, be dropped off and picked up, and will also accommodate multiple needs throughout their long day. In this renovated space, day students can easily transition from the academic day to afternoon athletics and programs, and into evening activities, rehearsals, club meetings, and study groups.”

The plan also calls for improved accessibility, shower and changing facilities for day students, and a large outside terrace spanning the northern side of the building. Faculty housing and classroom space will remain an important component of the overall building, ensuring consistent student and faculty interaction in a variety of ways throughout the day.

To date the Academy has raised $3 million towards the estimated $4.5 million project and fundraising for the final $1.5 million remains a top priority. We will be ready to set a construction start date and define a timeline as soon as this fundraising effort is complete. For information on supporting the project please contact the Office of Advancement at 978.499.3185.