Student center

McDaniel College unveils renovated and renamed student center

Artist’s rendering of an $11 million renovation of McDonald College’s new Roj Student Center (courtesy McDaniel College)

McDaniel College on Friday unveiled the $11 million renovation of its new Roj Student Center in preparation for the fall semester.

The $11 million renovation upgrades the McDaniel Student Center located in the middle of campus and includes all-new student spaces, as well as offices for the Center for Experience and Opportunity, Student Engagement and Office of Diversity and Inclusion. Other highlights include an updated fast-casual restaurant concept creating additional on-campus takeout, a green rooftop terrace, and a new university store.

The renovation added 2,328 square feet to the structure for a total of 40,014 square feet.

The Roj Student Center was named in honor of Mary Lynn Durham and her husband, Bill Roj, whose $5 million leadership gift made the renovation possible. Both are 1970 alumni of the college.

Durham is an attorney and Vice Chairman of the Board of Trustees of McDaniel College, while Roj served as Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer of ERICO, one of the world’s leading manufacturers and distributors of quality electrical and fastener products. superior for electrical, mechanical and civil applications.

Other six- and seven-figure donations to the project have come from several current and distinguished directors, including George Benson; James Francis, a 1984 alumnus, and his wife, Dianne; chairman of the board Otto Guenther, an alumnus from 1963, and his wife, Jan; former Board Chairman Martin KP Hill; Dr. Chitrachedu Naganna and his wife, Vimala; Robert “Robin” Solomon, III, and his wife, Sarah; Carroll Yingling, a 1968 alumnus, and his wife, Susan Morales Yingling, a 1970 alumnus who also earned a master’s degree in 2000; and William Westervelt, a 1971 alumnus, and his wife, Laura.

Construction on the three-story building began in late May 2019. Architect, Marshall Craft Associates of Baltimore, and contractor, Whiting-Turner Contracting Company of Baltimore, have been working throughout the COVID-19 pandemic to s ensuring that the building would be ready for use by students upon their arrival on campus for the fall semester. The full renovation should be completed in early October.

It is the first comprehensive renovation of the student center since its construction in 1978 as a contemporary three-level “non-building” to tie in with the surrounding architecture and connect the college’s Elderdice Hall and Rouzer Hall with the Englar Dining Room and the Harlow Pool. He was named following a donation from the family of Alonzo Decker, the son of Black & Decker’s co-founder who served as the company’s president and CEO.