Img: Magazine
Alvernia Magazine
Latest Edition
Contact us

Ground Broken on New Campus Commons

Date: 5/7/2012

Threatening skies couldn’t dampen spirits or excitement of the nearly 100 faculty, staff, students, donors and guests who gathered to celebrate the official ground breaking of the new 18,500 square-foot Campus Commons. The building, attached to one of the innovative apartment buildings under construction in Founders Village, should be completed by late fall and is a key focus of the Value & Vision campaign. 

The Campus Commons will be home to a large two-story fitness center, a dance and aerobics studio and a campus living room that will accommodate more than 100 students for leisure activities, study and programs. It will also provide space for clubs, organizations and student life offices.

“Moments like today remind us all that, at colleges and universities like Alvernia, it is and should be all about our students,” said Alvernia President Thomas F. Flynn. “Great progress like this is possible only through support from generous individuals and organizations who care deeply about the university and our students.”

Alvernia’s Student Government Association voted earlier in the semester to contribute $150,000 from its capital account to support the construction of the facility. In addition, a distinguished member of Alvernia’s Board of Trustees, Tom Martell, and his wife Marcia, made a major financial commitment in support of the Commons and also put in place a challenge to encourage parents of current students to join them in helping fund the campus living room in the Commons. 

“We have together transformed Alvernia from a commuter school to one with a vibrant residential life for a large majority of its full-time undergraduates,” Flynn said noting the university’s strong enrollment growth during the past several years and appeal to students from out of state and nearby. “As a famous voice in the movies once said so well, “If you build it, they will come!” 

  • History: Established as a private four-year liberal arts college in 1958, Alvernia celebrated its 50th year by being awarded university status in 2008.
  • Heritage: Founded by the Bernardine Sisters, a Catholic religious order, the university embraces the Franciscan core values of service, humility, collegiality, contemplation and peacemaking.
  • Motto: “To Learn, To Love, To Serve”
  • Campus: The main campus in Reading is 121 acres, with two satellite campuses in Philadelphia and Pottsville (Schuylkill County).
  • Location: Our residential campus is situated three miles from center-city Reading, in the scenic Blue Mountain area of Eastern Pennsylvania.
  • Enrollment: 3,000 students attend Alvernia including 1,500 traditional undergraduates, 600 continuing education students, and 780 graduate students. Over 77% of first-year students live on campus.
  • Faculty: Our professors are accomplished scholars, experts in their fields, and supportive mentors. The student-to-faculty ratio is 14:1. Most classes are 20 students or fewer.
  • Athletics: NCAA Division III, member of the Commonwealth Conference of the Middle Atlantic States Athletic Corporation and member of Eastern College Athletic Conference, 8 men’s and 10 women’s intercollegiate sports.