On Thursday, April 15, Grace College broke ground on its Alpha Dining Hall renovation and expansion. The building, constructed in 1964, will undergo a facelift to better serve the needs of students and increase capacity. The groundbreaking ceremony was led by Grace College President Dr. Bill Katip and included remarks from Grace College senior administration, students, and board members.
“If there is one thing that has become undeniable to me in the last year, it’s that we are designed to be together,” said Grace College President Dr. Bill Katip. “Our campus is absolutely thrilled about this Alpha Dining project because it underscores our mission to give students a place to come to the table and find belonging in the body of Christ,” he said.
The initial funding for the project comes from the school’s ASPIRE campaign, completed in 2019. One of the campaign objectives was to invest in spaces for students to gather. Through ASPIRE, and many generous donations since, $5.1 has been raised to date toward a $5.5 million fundraising goal. The school plans to raise the final $200,000 on its annual Day of Giving on April 29.
The renovation will include a floor-to-ceiling overhaul, expanded kitchen space, and added dining stations. This will include a new food station, “Simple Servings,” that will provide daily options that are allergen-free and address a variety of dietary restrictions.
Alpha Dining will be expanded through the project, increasing its capacity from 360 to 420. The project will also bring the addition of new spaces for students to gather, including patio seating where 25-30 students will enjoy the outdoors, as well as a new lobby space, complete with a large fireplace.
“We want to make more space in Alpha Dining for the conversations and relationships that shape students’ minds and hearts,” said Aaron Crabtree, associate vice president and dean of student affairs. “We want to improve the service students receive so that their dietary needs are met and elevate the atmosphere so that our students feel as comfortable in the space as they would if they were at home in their own kitchens.”
To give to the Alpha Dining project or to learn more, visit grace.edu/campaign/alpha-dining-project.
Feature image: James Blooemendaal, Dr. Laurie Owen, Andre Stone, Kiersten Martin, Dr. Bill Katip, Hannah Navarro, Jennifer Hollar, Dr. Paul Blair, Kevin Hogan, Andy Miller and Travis McDougal break ground on the Alpha Dining project.