At the beginning of a new school year, everything feels fresh and new. When it includes the exciting redesign of Ashley Hall’s main campus entrance and a beautiful renovation of Lower School, what’s not to be excited about?! Over the summer, work was done on campus including a complete makeover of our Smith Street campus entrance so that it can now fully function as our main campus entrance. (Don’t you just love the new water feature?!) The Pardue Hall entrance has also been reconfigured to serve as the campus’s visitor reception area. Don’t forget all visitors must enter campus through the Smith Street Gate.
The Lo Dome for the Lower School
A few steps from the Smith Street gate is Pardue Hall with its new and impressive glass roof and enclosed breezeways. Lovingly called the Lo Dome to honor Ashley Hall’s longest active and much beloved faculty member, Lois Ruggiero, the glass enclosure adds over 2,000 square feet offering additional collaboration and learning space for programs such as the school’s ever-growing STEAM curriculum of science, technology, engineering, arts, and math. Needless to say the girls are loving the new space. We can’t wait to see it fully come to life this year! (Parents from all divisions are encouraged to stop by and see the new space in Pardue Hall.)
As soon as school was dismissed in early June, Ashley Hall embarked on a project to beautifully enclose Pardue Hall that will effectively create an additional 2,000 square feet of multipurpose space for collaboration and increased building safety. The School has lovingly named this new structure and place the Lo Dome in honor of the school’s longest active and universally admired teacher, Ms. Lois Ruggiero.
Research shows that girls must be encouraged to explore STEAM curriculum before the crucial middle school years in order to pique their interest in pursuing degrees and careers in science and engineering-related fields. For precisely this reason, Ashley Hall has dedicated a science teacher for the Lower School supporting the development of STEAM and computer coding initiatives. The Lo Dome will offer our students much-needed climate-controlled space for the girls to build, code, create, and collaborate. If all goes as planned, the Lo Dome will be in place and operational for the August opening of the 2017–2018 school year.
For more information on supporting the Lo Dome project, contact Director of Institutional Advancement, Suzie Smith, at [email protected] or (843) 720-2886.
Rendering by Walker Concepts Architecture.
Lower School Art Teacher, Tina Hirsig, and Kristen Callahan, Director of Technology, Innovation and Education have teamed together to create several dedicated “tinkering” spaces around campus which feature unique collaborative installations. Tina and Kristen believe that shaping and reshaping the world around us through the process of creative play promotes, supports and fosters critical thinking, curiosity, collaboration, problem-solving, exploration, and self discovery.
Each installation—Earth Loom, Lego Wall, and Chalkboard Wall—incorporates our school Hallmarks: Worldly, Compassionate, Discerning, Creative, Intelligent, Purposeful, Collaborative which serve as guiding principles. Teachers bring their disciplinary knowledge to the installation in order to expand and elaborate on their curriculum. These spaces serve as an incubator for new ideas with emphasis on what is already being taught in the classroom. These interactive installations have the potential to extend what students are learning academically, socially, and/or creatively.
Ashley Hall Head of School, Jill Muti, and the Board of Trustees are proud to name its newest building The Elizabeth Rivers Lewine ’54 House for Global Studies in honor of Ashley Hall Alumna and Charleston native Elizabeth Rivers Lewine. Located adjacent to the campus at 179 Rutledge Avenue, The Elizabeth Rivers Lewine ’54 House for Global Studies is the hub of Ashley Hall’s signature Global Studies Program which is designed to integrate global issues into the school’s curriculum.
This special dedication took place September 29 during a celebration marking the successful completion of the Global Studies Program Initiative, a $4 million fundraising campaign. On the naming of the building, Head of School, Jill Muti, stated, “The Ashley Hall community is thrilled to honor Elizabeth in this way. Through her love for Ashley Hall’s mission and initial leadership gift to the Centennial Campaign championing scholarship and program for students, in addition to her endorsement of the need for a robust global studies curricular focus, Elizabeth’s generosity will impact Ashley Hall students for generations to come.”
The Elizabeth Rivers Lewine ’54 House for Global Studies is the residential home for the school’s international boarding students and resident advisors. It also features studio space for internationally-focused Upper School humanities. The 18th-century home was purchased by Ashley Hall in 2013 and renovated to serve the unique needs of the global studies curriculum which addresses: International Law; Class, Race, and Gender studies; as well as co-curricular activities like the Model United Nations, language immersion programs, and international travel abroad opportunities.
Future chefs in the making! Ashley Cook’s 6th Grade class carefully prepares three meals from their organic garden. Everyone agreed that their vegetables, fruits and herbs taste better than at the grocery store!