Mars Hill University Breaks Ground for Campus Center

Hundreds of people recently gathered on the Lunsford Commons of Mars Hill University to celebrate the formal groundbreaking of a new campus center.

The $28 million centrally-located campus center will feature student activity space, a student fitness center, and space for gaming and dining. The center will also provide a single location for many “student-centric” offices on campus, including the university’s admissions office, Cothran Center for Career Readiness, chaplain’s office, student life, and student organizations.

Construction will involve renovating and expanding Blackwell Hall, the former administration building, and creating accessible outdoor spaces with improved lighting adjacent to it.


The as-yet-unnamed campus center is the single funding focus of the Together We Rise Capital campaign, which has been underway since January 2021.

President Tony Floyd thanked all those in attendance for the role they had played in supporting the project, including former President Dan Lunsford, who began discussions about a campus center during his administration. Floyd also thanked trustees, faculty, staff, and members of the Together We Rise campaign committee.

“You have set the path for this big project, and nobody will ever be able to say that you didn’t dream big,” Floyd said.

Greta Byrd, vice president for advancement, thanked the many people who have made donations to the campus center, which she called “a space that embodies the heart and soul of our campus.”

Trustee Wayne Higgins, chair of the Together We Rise campaign committee, told the gathered crowd that the campus center, like everything else accomplished by the university, is ultimately about the students. He gave the closing prayer for the ceremony, praying that the new building would be dedicated to the mission of Mars Hill University, and its ongoing pursuit of truth and knowledge.

In recognition of the campus center’s impact on the student experience, a group of students used ceremonial shovels to break ground in front of the construction site.

Written by Mars Hill University.