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Honors College Swings the Hammer on Campbell Hall Groundbreaking

A group of people stands on the steps of Michigan State University's Campbell Hall. Some of them are in white hard hats, while others hold gleaming silver shovels. On each side of the stairs is foam core poster on a easel with renovation renderings.

It started with speeches and ended with hard hats.

The Michigan State University Honors College hosted a celebration on Friday, May 10 with a group of Campbell Hall project supporters just days before the start of the renovation.

The event began with a reception at Cowles House, featuring remarks from MSU Board of Trustees Vice Chair Kelly Tebay, Office of the Provost Chief of Staff Ashley Green, Senior Vice President of Student Life & Engagement Vennie Gore, Honors College and College of Arts & Letters Dean Christopher Long, and Honors College student Jerome Hamilton, Jr.

Then, attendees – including Honors College staff, students, donors, and other supporters – toured Campbell Hall and participated in a ceremonial groundbreaking.

“As we kick off the renovation of Campbell Hall, we celebrate more than a physical transformation. We are reaffirming our commitment to academic excellence,” Tebay said.

“The reputation of the Honors College not only enhances the academic stature of MSU but also amplifies its overall image,” she said. “This reputation attracts top-tier faculty, draws the interest of potential funders, and strengthens our graduate programs. It also creates essential pathways for student opportunities.”

Long acknowledged the special partnership with MSU Student Life & Engagement to bring the project to fruition. He said the development of an Honors College living-learning community at Campbell Hall will impact generations of students to come.

“We know that the world’s most intractable challenges require the ability to work with diverse teams across disciplinary boundaries,” Long said. “A newly renovated Campbell Hall will attract the very best students from across the globe.”

Hamilton, who is an active Honors College student, spoke to how the living-learning community will help with recruitment.

Honors College student Jerome Hamilton Jr. stands at a green podium and speaks into a microphone to a seated crowd.

“I’ll be able to tell high school seniors looking at MSU that we are literally tearing down walls and ripping up floors for them,” he said. “And I can’t talk about all of the great things that will come out of the Campbell Hall renovation without mentioning our donors, who are giving this idea feet and wings.”

Thanks to many generous donors, the Honors College has funded 78% of its $3.1 million portion of the project.

Campbell Hall – built in 1939 and perched on the university’s historic north end of campus – will undergo a transformation into an Honors College living-learning community. It is slated to reopen in August 2025, when it will serve as a residence hall for 300 honors students and provide resources for the entire Honors College community.

The full photo album from this event can be found here.

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