A new elevator gives a fresh look to the west side of the refurbished St. Peter’s College. A miniature bird house in the shape of Michael Hall was designed and built by Miners Construction, project manager for the renovations. Photo by Paul Paproski

St. Peter’s continues to plan for future

By  Paul PaproskiI, OSB, Canadian Catholic News
  • October 27, 2012

MUENSTER, SASK. - The staff of St. Peter’s College has only one major hurdle to overcome to bring the renovations of Michael Hall, the college building, to an end — namely, completing the fundraising to pay for the final renovation costs, which are close to $4 million.

The success of a recent open house at the college showed that goal can be reached, as there was much enthusiasm and support for the college. The public still considers St. Peter’s College to be an important part of the local district and larger community, according to Robert Harasymchuk, college president.

“Fundraising is a necessary element of St. Peter’s success. The Michael Hall renovations have necessitated financing that we hope will be supported through the generosity of our alumni and the community that supports and depends on St. Peter’s as a hub for sport, culture, recreation and of course learning,” he said. “We are continually seeking ways to improve and expand our programs and services and this is possible with the help of our college supporters.”

St. Peter’s was founded in 1921 by the Benedictine monks of St. Peter’s Abbey and since 1926 has been affiliated with the University of Saskatchewan.

Abbot Peter Novecosky, OSB, chancellor of the college, cut the ribbon to officially re-open Michael Hall after four years of renovations which cost $15 million. The renovations began as a dream 10 years ago, he remarked.

“A number of the alumni commented on the amazing transformation that Michael Hall has undergone,” Harasymchuk said in an interview.

“Although the building looked new in appearance, they said it still had the same ‘feel,’ a testament to the talent of architect Maurice Soloudre in blending the need for modern conveniences while maintaining the tradition and heritage of the building. We also heard some remarks that although many people knew it was a huge undertaking for the college, the renovations were worth it to know that students would benefit from the college for decades to come.”

Renovations affected every floor of Michael Hall, which was gutted, rebuilt and refurbished with new floors, walls, doors, lighting and windows. Doorway entrances were widened, bathrooms upgraded and wiring brought up to standard to enable information technology systems to be used. There are three new science labs on the basement floor. Students can study and visit in a lounge and recreation room, and exercise in a modern fitness centre. One of the most noticeable changes is the new elevator and shaft, an addition to the west side of the building.

Renovations were made possible through the federal Knowledge Infrastructure grant program, the provincial Ministry of Advanced Education, donations from alumni and others who gave to the capital campaign. Miners Construction was the project manager. Support was provided by the college board of governors and the monks of St. Peter’s Abbey.

(Prairie Messenger)

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