Biola Makes A Statement With New Business Building

Apr. 27, 2007 By Jenna Bartlo

La Mirada, Calif. — The public unveiling of Biola University’s new 32,000-square-foot business building made a statement — Biola means business.

The Christian university celebrated the grand opening of the $13.3 million building with a ribbon cutting ceremony Friday morning. The building will house the Crowell School of Business whose mission is “Business as ministry.”

Senior business management major, Danielle Jorgensen, is excited about the new addition to campus. “It’s a tangible example of Biola’s commitment to equipping business majors for ministry.”

“Businesses are generally characterized by their moral deficits, but at Biola University, its business graduates are known for their quality and integrity,” Dr. James Canning, a business professor, told the 500-plus students and faculty in attendance

Named after the Crowell family of Crowell, Weedon & Co. — the largest independent investment firm in the Western United States — the building will create a much stronger business environment for faculty and students, said Larry Strand, the school’s dean.

Business is the largest undergraduate major at Biola. The school also offers a MBA program.

Designed to blend in with the residential community of La Mirada, the two-story brick building has a corporate feel inside, with cherry wood panels on the walls, bright trendy colors in the hallways, leather lounge furniture and polished limestone floors in its cathedral entryway.

Ken Bascom, senior director of facilities planning/construction at Biola was an integral part of the design process. Bascom said that he was “trying to put together a building that would communicate quality to the corporate world and prospective students – both undergraduate and MBA.”

The business-atmosphere gives students and faculty a sense of ownership and pride of their new academic home. A display in the front lobby of the building has the words “Business as Ministry” in gold acrylic impressed on it, reminding students of the school’s mission.

The building uses its space effectively with multiple sized classrooms, tiered lecture halls, and study rooms that promote continued interaction between students and faculty. The latest technology with computer labs available for student use, wireless Internet for the entire building, and other resources to promote a highly effective teaching and learning environment.

But Suzanne Crowell, who spoke at the dedication representing the Crowell family, said the main purpose of the building was to help equip students become leaders in the world.

“This is not just a building of bricks, but a building that will be used to impact the kingdom of God,” Crowell said.

Biola’s “business as ministry” roots go back to 1908 when it was co-founded by oilman Lyman Stewart, who co-founded Union Oil Company and the Union Rescue in Los Angeles. Stewart thrived as president of Union Oil, growing the company from a $10 million in 1900 to $50 million in 1908.

At Biola’s first ground breaking ceremony, Stewart told his audience, “From this place shall radiate streams of influence which will be a great blessing not only to the multitudes around us, but also to the darkest places of the earth.”

Business has been a part of Biola’s undergraduate studies since 1963. A School of Business was established in 1993 and was renamed Crowell School of Business in 2006. Today, Crowell is one of seven schools at Biola and combines a foundational business education with biblical integration. It offers five undergraduate emphases in Accounting, Information Systems, International Business, Management and Marketing, as well as, a MBA program geared toward working professionals.

For more information or high quality images contact Rae Lynn Rucker at 562.900.2491.

Biola University, founded in 1908, is recognized by U.S. News & World Report as a “National University,” which they consider the “major leagues” of higher education. Biola offers 145 academic programs through its six schools, ranging from the B.A. to the Ph.D. As a theologically conservative, Protestant university, Biola provides Evangelical students with biblically centered education, equipping them in mind and character to impact the world for the Lord Jesus Christ in any professional setting.  In 2003, Biola launched a new vision to be a global center for Christian thought and spiritual renewal, addressing the crucial cultural issues of our day. For more information, visit www.biola.edu.



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Biola University
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