University celebrates opening of Adele Hall Learning Commons

University celebrates opening of Adele Hall Learning Commons

University administrators and project donors cut the ribbon during the March 28 dedication of UNL's Adele Coryell Hall Learning Commons. The 24-hour learning and study space opened for student use in January.
Craig Chandler | University Communications
University administrators and project donors cut the ribbon during the March 28 dedication of UNL's Adele Coryell Hall Learning Commons. The 24-hour learning and study space opened for student use in January.

The University of Nebraska–Lincoln dedicated the Adele Coryell Hall Learning Commons in Love Library on March 28.

The $10 million space, made possible with nearly $7 million in private donations, is designed to accommodate and promote intensive study and scholarly work and is open 24 hours a day. It allows collaborations and cross-discipline connections to take place between students and faculty within a technology-rich area in the heart of City Campus. It opened Jan. 11.

The learning commons was named in honor of alumna Adele Coryell Hall.

"Already, thousands of students, faculty, staff and community members have enjoyed this wonderful space," said Nancy Busch, dean of the University Libraries. "The stars certainly aligned to bring this wonderful learning commons to fruition."

Several project donors, including Hall family members, attended the dedication ceremony.

An undisclosed leadership gift was made by the family of Donald J. Hall, chairman of Hallmark Cards Inc., of Kansas City in memory of the late Adele Coryell Hall, a Lincoln native and lifelong devoted Husker who graduated from Nebraska in 1953. Donald and Adele Hall were married for nearly 60 years and raised three children, Donald Hall Jr., David Hall and Margaret Hall Pence. A lifelong community volunteer and philanthropist, Adele Hall died on Jan. 26, 2013, at 81.

A digital kiosk installed by the south entrance to the learning commons features information about Hall and her family.

A principal gift was made by alumni Kit and Dick Schmoker of Edina, Minn., and in their honor the main study area along the entire north side is named the Kit and Dick Schmoker Study Center. Kit Schmoker graduated in 1964, and Dick Schmoker received an undergraduate degree in 1962 and graduated from the College of Law in 1964.

Candy and Tom Henning of Lincoln, who graduated from Nebraska in 1975, made a major gift to the project. The cafe area is named the Henning Family Cafe in recognition of the Hennings and their daughters, Cassie Henning Kohl, a 2009 graduate, and Madeline Henning, a 2012 graduate.

Barbara Arnold, originally of Alliance, who graduated from the university in 1965 and is a longtime ophthalmology surgeon in Sacramento, Calif., contributed to the Learning Commons project. The central information and technology support desk, staffed by library experts 24 hours a day, is named the Barbara J. Lawrence Arnold, M.D. ASKus Exchange.

The 30,000-square-foot learning commons is on the first floor of Love Library North and provides an almost full view of City Campus. The space includes a Dunkin' Donuts coffee and baked goods cafe, 18 private study rooms, access to an ASKus area and Huskertech help station, and a One-Button Studio where users can easily record presentations. It's able to accommodate about 500 people at a time and has an outdoor plaza with additional seating.

"The Adele Hall Learning Commons will be the core of the student's academic experience," Chancellor Harvey Perlman said. "It returns Love Library to its central place in the academic environment of a modern 21st-century university."

Members of Adele Coryell Hall's family take part in the learning commons ceremony on March 28. Adele Hall is a University of Nebraska alumna who graduated in 1953.
Nancy Busch, dean of the University Libraries, talks during the dedication ceremony in UNL's new Adele Coryell Hall Learning Commons.
David Hall (right) and his daughter, Rebecca, deliver remarks during the dedication of UNL's new Adele Coryell Hall Learning Commons. David is Adele Coryell Hall's son.
Nancy Busch (from left), dean of the University Libraries, and Virginia Nelson speak to Don Hall Sr., after the March 28 dedication ceremony. Don and Adele Coryell Hall were married for nearly 60 years.
The new north entrance to UNL's Adele Coryell Hall Learning Commons.