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VCU Globe, the latest “living-learning community” for internationally focused students, officially launched from new residence hall West Grace North yesterday. The $29.9 million building is home to 54 sophomore level Globe students, international students and other upperclassmen.
Students in the Globe program will participate in specialized seminars and classes with an international focus, and will earn a certificate of global education upon completion of the six-semester program. Globe students were required to live in West Grace North, which makes up the second addition to the Grace Street Village.
“Students now have to think about the fact that your future may actually have you … in all corners of the world,” said provost Beverly Warren. “A living learning concept like the Globe gives you that opportunity.”
The five-story residence hall includes 119 furnished apartment-style rooms as well as two courtyards, six themed community rooms for resident and spaces on the first floor for classes and seminars. The 12-month housing contracts will cost between $7,020 to $9,9001, the most expensive range for an on-campus residence hall.
“I guess it’s worth it cause it’s new,” said Globe student Tina Chen. “I’ve always been interested in international cultures,” she said. “I thought this might be a great way to meet new people.”
Although students moved into West Grace North on Aug. 1, some complained that the building may not have been fully ready when they arrived. “Moving into the new dorms I expected everything to be flawless but it wasn’t,” said junior Denny Nguyen. “I heard constant beeping from the doors, water pressure was low, and things were still not finished outside.”
Brian Ohlinger, associate vice president of facilities management, said the interior was 100 percent finished before students moved in but added, “Because it’s a new building we have little ‘knick in the wall’ things not working,” he said. “In probably a month from now all of the panel work will be done.”
VCU will continue to expand in the coming years as it works towards the strategic plan that was passed by the Board of Visitors last May. President Michael Rao estimated $3.5 billion worth of investments will be made in the region in the next 12 – 15 years.
1. The apartment style, one student per bedroom with private bath costs about $9,900
News writer Marhesha Maldonda contributed to this story.