Realizing significant growth in student enrollment and faculty, the College of Business is proceeding with delayed plans to build a 74,000-square-foot building catty-corner to the Rauch Business Center that will allow for innovative ways of teaching and an expansion of programs.
The new building is possible as a result of donors who have expressed confidence in the future of the college and whose gifts are funding the project.
"The new facility is posed to provide our students with the next level of classroom experience by fusing a traditional Lehigh education with lessons learned during the pandemic about the use of technology in teaching and in business," said Georgette Chapman Phillips, the Kevin L. and Lisa A. Clayton Dean of the College of Business.
“I can’t thank the many donors enough for their commitment in helping us to better serve our students and prepare them for a data-driven world, as well as support our faculty’s work and research, and enhance our efforts in executive education,” Phillips said.
The plans call for the construction of the three-story, four-floor structure at Packer Avenue between Taylor and Webster streets. The site now holds a parking lot and three buildings.
The new building will accommodate classes in the College of Business's undergraduate and graduate programs and provide 16 additional teaching spaces, all of which will be equipped to support remote and hybrid learning. It also will provide space for an expanded Bosland Financial Services Lab, a Data Analytics Lab and a Rauch Media and Communications Lab to support oral, written and digital communications classes.
A Behavioral Lab will allow for observation and subject interviews, and there will be business innovation/incubator space for entrepreneurial exploration. The building also will be the new home of the Vistex Institute for Executive Learning and Research.
Since the Rauch Business Center opened in 1991, the College has seen a 43% increase in enrollment and 38% increase in faculty. New programs and courses of study have been added, including a FinTech minor, interdisciplinary initiatives majors and executive education.
Construction work on the new building will begin April 1, with site preparation. Future plans call for the existing Rauch Business Center to be expanded and renovated