On Friday, October 8, University of Redlands President Krista Newkirk will cut the ceremonial ribbon of the Fletcher Jones Innovation Center, the newly expanded computer center on the university’s main campus.
The expansion, part of a $950,000 leadership grant from the Fletcher Jones Foundation, a long-time university partner, will focus on technology-enabled learning by modernizing the 29-year old computer center, located in the U of R Armacost Library.
“This generous grant from the Fletcher Jones Foundation continues a long tradition of supporting technology that serves our students and faculty,” said U of R Chief Information Officer Steve Garcia. “This updated space will allow us to provide our students access to emerging business skills.”
Completing the $10 million Educational Innovation priority within the University’s Forever Yours campaign, the grant includes modernizing the existing computer center; creating a Collaboration Center with an augmented and virtual reality station; and expanding the existing Makerspace and its 3-D scanning and printing capabilities.
A highlight in the new space is an interview suite with video technology—allowing students to prepare and practice for job interviews, and helping them develop into competitive candidates with prospective employers. Kelly Dries, executive director of the university’s Office of Career and Professional Development (OCPD) noted, “We are grateful to the Fletcher Jones Foundation for helping us ensure all students have access to put their best foot forward in preparing for their future careers.”
Based in Pasadena, the Fletcher Jones Foundation has supported private colleges and universities in California for nearly 50 years. Executive Director Mary Spellman says, “The Fletcher Jones Foundation Board is honored to assist the University of Redlands in creating the Fletcher Jones Innovation Center and providing students with the needed technology and resources to support their learning and future work. Fletcher Jones came from humble beginnings, and I believe he would be pleased that his legacy will support other students with limited resources to reach their potential through technology.”