NU-Q’s new building officially inaugurated

Maha Essid and Mariam Al-Dhubhani

On May 1st, 2017, Northwestern University in Qatar officially inaugurated its new campus through a building dedication ceremony and a symposium attended by members of Qatar’s royal family, a delegation from Northwestern’s campus in Evanston, diplomats, and the NU-Q community.

The LEED Gold certified 515,000 square feet, state-of-the-art modern building was envisioned and designed by the American architect Antoine Predock, who created the building to resemble a desert fortress shaped like a saif, Arabic for sword.

Speeches at the event included those from the Dean and CEO of NU-Q Everette Dennis, the United States Ambassador to Qatar Dana Shell Smith, and the President of Northwestern University Morton Schapiro. The remarks were about NU-Q’s new building serving as an extension of the home campus in Evanston, Illinois.

Members of Qatar’s royal family, Sheikha Moza bint Nasser, chairperson of Qatar Foundation, and Sheikha Hind bint Hamad Al-Thani, vice chairperson and CEO of Qatar Foundation, attended the event and were given a private tour of the building. The dedication ceremony ended with President Schapiro presenting Sheikha Moza with a symbol of gratitude for Qatar Foundation – a miniature of a larger painting called “Painting for Doha”, that is displayed in the VIP majlis in the building.

“It was terrific to see everybody come together about a project that has taken so long and that involved so many different people,” said Pamela Erskine-Loftus, director of the Media Majlis at NU-Q. The Media Majlis, expected to open in fall 2018, will be the first museum in the Arab world dedicated to media content related to both journalism and communication.

“I was very impressed by the organizing of the event, the crew, the design, and the crowd. I loved how everyone is supportive in here, especially Her Highness Sheikha Moza, Sheikha Hind, and the president of NU. The building is very huge and it facilitates the students to study in the best condition,” said Fares Dehbi, a high school student at the Tunisian School in Doha and the vocalist who sang the Qatari national anthem at the event.

 


 

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