DuBOIS — Over the past several decades, Penn State DuBois campus has continued to grow and expand to better serve its students and the community.
“Today, Penn State DuBois offers six baccalaureate and seven associate degrees and minors,” said Marketing Director Jessica Mondi.
The campus also offers the first two years of around 160 baccalaureate degrees that can be completed at University Park in State College, or at other colleges/universities.
“Penn State is excited to celebrate years of providing quality education, community partnership and dedication to excellence,” said Mondi.
First established in 1935 with 42 students, The DuBois Center of The Pennsylvania State College only consisted of one part-time and four full-time instructors, said Mondi.
“By the end of 1938, enrollment increased, which encouraged the school board and the heirs of the late John E. DuBois, Sr., to present the DuBois Mansion and four acres of land for the development of the institution,” according to the history. “After extensive repairs, the center relocated to the DuBois Mansion and began expanding. Not long after the center moved in, admission rates continued to increase and reached full capacity for the facility.”
Mondi noted that during this time, World War II erupted in Europe, creating new challenges for PSU undergraduate centers.
“Because of this, an ‘accelerated program’ was added to the institution, allowing students to take summer semesters starting in 1942. An Educational Defense Training Program was also offered to adults via evening classes,” according to Mondi’s research.
The campus closed for some time in 1944 as a result of the war.
Patrick Joseph Swift incorporated the DuBois Educational Foundation (DEF) in 1945.
“Once sufficient funds were raised for the project additional space was added, as well as a fieldhouse for student activities,” said Mondi.
The campus reopened following World War II in 1946.
After officially becoming The Pennsylvania State University in 1955, “commonwealth campuses” were designated in 1959, according to the history.
“The old ‘DUC’ became known as the DuBois campus, honoring the family that donated their estate. There have been multiple buildings added to the DuBois campus since this time,” Mondi noted.
One of the Penn State DuBois buildings – Swift Memorial Building – was constructed in 1962 thanks to funds generated from businesses and residents in the area.
Since then, the campus has expanded with adding the Symmco House, Hiller Student Union, and Smeal buildings, Mondi said.
“In 2004, the DEF Workforce Development and Technology Center, and again in 2012 with the addition of the Fairman House,” she said.
Recently, the Idea Lab – which houses 3D printers, scanning hardware, industrial vinyl printers and other equipment – was incorporated into campus. Part of the North Central PA LaunchBox, the Idea Lab encourages innovative thinking and creativity, and is “designed to serve the region for economic development, entrepreneurship, and innovation,” said Mondi.
In its most recent expansion, the campus plans to open its Physical Fitness, Athletics and Wellness (PAW) Center in fall of this year – a $17.3 million project.
“This will transform the former Multipurpose Building into a state-of-the-art facility to include a fitness center, wellness classes, gymnasium, health services offices, and more,” said Mondi.