On January 22, the academic center opened its doors to the Nobles community. The new space includes areas for collaborative work, a quiet study area, a reading room, and, of course, the Putnam Library.
Nobles celebrated the opening with multiple events across campus. In the Foster Gallery, librarians Emily Tragert and Talya Sokoll showcased the Walter Tower Collection, selecting from 1,300 rare and antique books donated by Nobles parents and grandparents Walter and June Tower in 1999.
Preparing for the opening, students and community members helped carry books from the old Putnam Library to the new. Mathematics faculty member Nick Nickerson, Nobles senior master, wrote a reflection on the same process of moving books at the opening of the original Putnam Library in October 1974. Nickerson remembers, “It was all a grand adventure, as many things seemed back then, and a pleasant escape from the routine of classes.”
On the academic center's opening day, history and social science faculty member Mike Kalin encouraged his Literature and Leadership students to write one sentence "vision statements" for the new building. Statements included hopes that the center "continues the culture of learning and collaboration at Nobles and provides a modern space for student inquiry." Students also hope that the building will "bring space and light for new innovation," "give students a place to bond with their grades and the school," and provide "a nest for creative thought."
Dr. Catherine J. Hall, head of school, announced the academic center’s opening in assembly on January 22. She thanked all the people who worked behind the scenes to make the new building possible, including Director of Buildings and Grounds Mike McHugh and his team, Chief Financial and Operating Officer Steve Ginsberg, and Chief Advancement Officer George Maley. She then revealed the video below, created by Nobles videographer Ben Heider.