December 07, 2009
anticipated opening of the 127,000 square foot, five-story D’Angelo
Center on St. John’s University’s Queens campus has been mounting
for months. At 12:24 p.m. yesterday, a huge throng of students
walked through the doors for the first time to realize a dream of
the University in its celebration of the $77 million
Named after Peter and Peg D’Angelo and their family, who both
serve as esteemed alumni and longstanding benefactors of St. John’s
University, the D’Angelo Center will house 14 classrooms, 6 seminar
rooms, student recreation and entertainment space, a Starbucks Café
and full-service cafeteria, student organization offices, a Board
Room, spacious lobby/living room amenities and banquet
wouldn’t have missed this for anything. Seeing the students
streaming in through the front door brought this building to life,”
said Peter D’Angelo to an overflow crowd of students gathered in
the new building. “When you’re out there years from now, successful
in your own careers think back to today; think how you can
contribute and how you can make things happen and do what you can
for St. John’s.”
The event was marked by a ceremonial ribbon cutting outside the
front steps of the facility by Rev. James J. Maher, C.M., Vice
President of Student Affairs, Julia A. Upton, RSM, Provost, James
P. Pellow, Ed.D., Executive Vice President and COO,
Rev. Donald J. Harrington, C.M., President, Peter and Peg D’Angelo
and Student Government Inc. President and Vice President Patrick
McBurney and Christina Zaccarelli, respectively.
“Now we have two places where our community gathers. We have St.
Thomas More Church where we gather as a community of faith, and we
have the D’Angelo Center, where we gather as a community of
learning and a community that shares life together,” said Rev.
Harrington, C.M. “My hope and my prayer is that the D’Angelo Center
will radiate for many, many years that very special spirit – which
is the St. John’s spirit.”
Coinciding with the opening of the new building was the
University’s Winter Carnival celebration, where students were
treated throughout the day to sample food and beverage from the
D’Angelo Center, receive complimentary coffee at the new Starbucks
Café and take tours of the new facilities. At night, a special mass
was held in St. Thomas More Church followed by a tree lighting and
fireworks display held on the Great Lawn on the Queens campus.
“This magnificent structure reflects both the remarkable
generosity of outstanding alumni like the D’Angelo family, and St.
John’s own unwavering commitment to providing our students with the
finest tools available to prepare them for success in today’s
global marketplace,” added Rev. Maher, C.M.
highlight of the opening ceremony was a dedication of the new
fireplace in the lobby/living room area of the D’Angelo Center
donated by the Class of 2009.
“This gift is a true testament of what our class stood for and
strives toward. Let this be a symbol of our love, dedication and
service to St. John’s,” noted Dana Lezama, President of St. John’s
Student Government Inc. from 2008-2009.
Through the masterful work of industry leaders Gensler
Architecture and FJ Sciame Construction Company Inc., this
state-of-the-art facility has become a reality and offers unique
features that include a symbolic torch sculpture which sits atop a
144 foot tower, the highest point of any University structure on
campus. The iconic flame, which connects metaphorically to both the
eternal light of knowledge and Christian theology, honors the
University as a beacon of higher learning and its historically
Catholic roots. Joseph Jaroff, the lead designer and founder
of Jaroff Design & Mison Concepts, Inc. was commissioned by the
University for this special project.
And, in the University’s quest to continue its successful
Sustainability Initiative, the D’Angelo Center was constructed
according to LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design)
standards and includes many energy-saving mechanical and electrical
“The D’Angelo Center is a true University Center. It is sure to
be the new hub of our campus designed by the students, for the
students,” said Patrick McBurney, current President of St. John’s
Student Government, Inc.
For more information contact Dominic Scianna, Assistant Vice
President for Media Relations by calling (718) 990-6185 or e-mail
inquiries to firstname.lastname@example.org.