Oklahoma Gov. Mary Fallin, Chickasaw Nation Gov. Bill Anoatubby and Harland C. Stonecipher, former chairman of the board and former chief operating officer of LegalShield, will be the featured speakers as East Central University conducts the grand opening of the Chickasaw Business and Conference Center Thursday, Aug. 22.
Limited tickets are available for the grand opening dinner Aug. 22 at 6:30 p.m. The cost is $50 per ticket. Reservations can be made by calling 580-559-5611.
As part of the grand opening, ECU will offer tours to the public from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. with a reception beginning at 4 p.m. and a ribbon-cutting ceremony to follow at 5 p.m.
The 59,111 square-foot facility, which will house the Harland C. Stonecipher School of Business, is located on the west side of the campus at Main and Center streets.
The facility sits directly west of another of ECU’s newer buildings, the Hallie Brown Ford Fine Arts Center, which opened in 2009.
The Chickasaw Business and Conference Center’s first floor houses the ECU Police Department and a convenient snack bar for grabbing a Starbucks brewed beverage. Inside and above the main entrance to the center, visitors can observe a message board which scrolls the latest stock market data and sports scores.
Also on the first floor is a large conference room, which doubles as a Federal Emergency Management Agency safe room. The same room functionality is possible because of a $1.46 million grant awarded to ECU by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security. Matching grants came from the City of Ada and ECU along with financial support from the Ada Jobs Foundation.
The 9,361 square-foot multi-purpose room, complete with an audio visual digital projection system and the latest technology, can hold 989 people for a full theater-seating conference and 1,900 people can occupy the area in a safe-room form in case of an emergency. The conference room, equipped with partitions, can also be divided into three separate conference rooms. Also on the first floor are two synergistic learning rooms.
The Harland C. Stonecipher School of Business occupies the second floor where each classroom will be equipped with state-of-the-art technology, a specialized financial lab/classroom, several student-friendly study areas and lounges. One feature is the Wilburn L. Smith Center for Entrepreneurship.
A second-floor section of the center will also benefit legal studies and criminal justice majors. A moot courtroom, named in honor of retired Oklahoma Supreme Court Chief Justice Rudolph Hargrave and father of ECU President John Hargrave, will also be utilized. The courtroom, equipped with the latest technology, will serve as a learning tool for legal studies students. A criminal justice lab is situated next door to the courtroom to benefit criminal justice majors.
The Kellogg and Sovereign Financial Lab, with funding provided by Kellogg and Sovereign Consulting of Ada, is equipped with an interactive Market Wall, which streams live data from stocks and bonds markets with just an approximate 20-minute delay. The board tracks various markets and the Dow and will provide market news as well. It is expected to help business professors, particularly in investment classes, according to Wendell Godwin, dean of the Harland C. Stonecipher School of Business.
The third floor contains offices for the dean of the business school and faculty members. Also included are conference rooms, technology lab/classrooms, several faculty lounges and a balcony/reception area.
Miles Associates of Oklahoma City was the architect for this project as Mark Gandy served as project manager and the contractor was Piazza Construction Ltd. of Denison, Texas.