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January 15, 2001


LA CROSSE, Wis—Viterbo announced plans today for a $9 million Center for Ethics, Science & Technology on university property located across from the Fine Arts Center on Ninth Street.

The announcement comes on the heels of nearly 10 years of record student enrollment—growth which has made the Center a high priority for students and faculty.

TCI of La Crosse has been selected for the design phase of the building. The construction process will begin this year and according to Dr. William J. Medland, president of Viterbo University,  more than $5 million already has been raised for the building project.
Once completed, the facility will be the central site of activity for a number of Viterbo’s key programs as well as a resource for the community.

"What better time to create a place where the world of ethics is integrated with the sciences and technology,"  said Medland. "This newest and exciting building initiative will allow us to prepare students for the multiple challenges they will most certainly face, which go well beyond developing skills in a specific discipline or major."

University officials are planning for state-of-the-art technology including distance learning which will allow Viterbo students to connect to worldwide resources.

According to Dr. Jack Havertape, academic vice president, the Center will offer dramatic changes for several programs, particularly for students in the sciences. "Biology and chemistry students will attend classes and study in modern, fully-equipped laboratories that replace Murphy Center labs."

The Center will also serve as the permanent home for the D.B. Reinhart Institute for Ethics in Leadership. Known for its innovative programming, the Institute sponsors programs for students as well as delving into ethics-related issues faced by healthcare, education, and business professionals. The Institute operates with a permanent endowment created by friends and associates in honor of the late D.B. Reinhart, a well-known La Crosse businessman and philanthropist.

The Center for Ethics, Science & Technology is the latest in a series of projects that were identified as part of Viterbo’s strategic plan, Vision 2005: A Renaissance for Living and Learning in the 21st Century. Over the past five years, Viterbo has constructed the Rose Terrace housing complex; purchased property and developed an outdoor athletic complex for softball, soccer and baseball; and created a campus thoroughfare of pedestrian walks and landscaped greenspaces which are used by students and the neighborhood. Under Vision 2005, the 30-year-old Fine Arts Center was targeted for $2 million in improvements, including the creation of an atrium. During the past decade, Viterbo’s endowment increased from $2 million to $10 million.

"Virtually everyone we have talked with about this building has been enthusiastic because the Center for Ethics, Science & Technology will solve many of the needs we currently have for space," Medland said. "With our enrollment  growth, the university needs to provide these students with an excellence in education and the faculty with the tools to teach.. The Center will do both of these." 

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