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April 7, 2014

OSU opens center for Latino students

Photo by Theresa Hogue [enlarge]

Oregon State University will hold opening ceremonies at 5 p.m. today for the Centro Cultural Cesar Chavez, located at 691 S.W. 26th St. in Corvallis.

The $2.5 million center is intended as a home away from home for Latino students, with space to socialize, celebrate, study and learn more about Latino culture.

The 3,600-square-foot building was designed by Jones & Jones architects. It houses a large gathering hall, offices and study spaces, a student lounge and a kitchen for social events.

Miguel Arellano, a graduate assistant who helps coordinate Centro activities, said having a resource like this helps attract and retain students.

“I grew up in Woodburn (Ore.), and coming from a place that is 60 percent Latino to a place where the Latino population is around 6 percent, there's a big difference,” he said in a statement. “When you're participating in events here, you see people who look like you, and who share similar passions and experiences.”

Andersen Construction was the general contractor. Other team members were IL Gross Structural Engineers; Interface Engineering, mechanical/electrical engineer; Pillar Consulting Group, civil engineer; Resource ISWP, irrigation design; and C&N Consultants, cost estimator.

The new building is one of four new student cultural centers being built on campus to replace aging structures.

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