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Release: Immediate

UI Engineering Building gets new name Oct. 9

IOWA CITY, Iowa -- University of Iowa President Mary Sue Coleman will join other UI officials, faculty, staff and students at 3 p.m. Friday, Oct. 9 when the UI Engineering Building -- currently undergoing the most extensive modernization in its 92-year history -- is officially renamed the Seamans Center for the Engineering Arts and Sciences.

The ceremony, to be held at the Engineering Building, corner of Washington and Capitol streets, officially recognizes the name that was selected and approved during fall semester 1997 to embody the unique strengths and characteristics of the college, define the college's mission, and honor those who played a role in the college's success.

It especially recognizes the major $3 million gift to the UI Foundation from 1971 electrical engineering graduate Gary F. Seamans and his wife, Camille Seamans, of St. Charles, Ill., in honor of Seamans and his family. (The college itself will continue to be called the College of Engineering.)

UI Foundation President Michael New also announced the four-year, $29 million modernization project, scheduled for completion in 2001, has successfully achieved its goal of raising $11 million from alumni, friends and corporations. The project also includes $14 million from state appropriations and $4 million from the UI.

Richard K. Miller, dean of the College of Engineering, said that the campaign has been successful due to the "overwhelming generosity" of alumni and friends. "I am pleased that many contributors will have rooms and other areas in the building named in their honor. Future engineering students will see the commitments made by others," he said.

One of 10 colleges on the University of Iowa campus, the College of Engineering has educational courses that date back more than a century. Its six departments include: biomedical, chemical and biochemical, civil and environmental, electrical and computer, industrial, and mechanical engineering.

The college, ranked among the top 50 engineering schools nationally, is recognized for its small size, personalized approach to education and focused mission. Its location on a strong liberal arts campus -- with natural strengths in writing and communications, health sciences, business, law, and arts and humanities -- provides highly complementary resources to build the type of broad technological education demanded in a rapidly changing world.

Designed by Iowa City architects Neumann Monson, P.C., and the Los Angeles firm Anshen + Allen, the modernization project is preserving much of the original 1906 Engineering Building while adding a significant number of classrooms, labs, and student-oriented study and meeting areas.

The UI Foundation is the preferred channel of support for private contributions to all areas of the University of Iowa. Foundation staff work with alumni and friends to provide capital funds for facilities improvements, scholarships, and projects and programs throughout the UI.