U of M opens new University Center

By Ben Watson - bio | email

MEMPHIS, TN (WMC-TV) - Students, faculty, and Tiger supporters gathered Monday for the grand opening of the University of Memphis' newest addition.

The new University Center opened with much fanfare and celebration.

A quartet played as faculty and students rushed under a large blue ribbon on their way inside for their first looks.

"I think its awesome, I love it!" exclaimed one U of M student.

"I'm glad they finally got something where everybody can come and chill," student Tayanna Simpson added.

For the students who like to eat on campus, the new University Center has every thing from fine dining restaurants to Burger King's new food concept, called a 'Whopper Bar'.

Bob Barnett, the University Center Director, said the U of M's Whopper Bar is, "the first one on a college campus and one of the first ones in the world."

Three years in the making, the new University Center also features a state of the art theater, a ballroom, and more space than ever before.

The new University Center cost $50 million to build, and to students and staff it's like an early Christmas present.

U of M President Dr. Shirley Raines said the new building is the largest capital project in the school's history and pointed out that, "it did not require state funding."

All this week the university celebrates the new University Center with a slate of activities including a film festival and a "Tiger Ice" brain freeze drinking contest.

Copyright 2010 WMC-TV. All rights reserved.