Penn State Dubois’ PAW Center Approved for Expansion

The renovation and addition to the Physical Fitness, Athletics and Wellness (PAW) Center at Penn State DuBois received final approval from the Penn State Board of Trustees earlier this month. This $17.3 million project will transform the current Multipurpose Building on campus into a state-of-the-art facility with a focus on athletics, health and recreation.

The gymnasium and fitness center will be updated to provide students and student-athletes, as well as employees, a space to work toward staying healthy. Additional practice space, as well as offices for athletics staff, also will be housed within the updated building. New heating and air conditioning systems will be installed for improved efficiencies.

penn state“The newly renovated facility will be a focal point for the campus to provide students and student-athletes the opportunity to gather, exercise, practice, and host larger campus-wide events,” said Ken Nellis, Penn State DuBois athletic director. “The renovations will be a recruitment and retention piece for the campus as we continue to strive to provide an excellent college experience for all students who call Penn State DuBois home.”

Originally constructed in 1966, the building currently houses the physical therapy assistant program and the wildlife technology program, in addition to athletics and fitness-related spaces. These academic programs will be relocated to existing space on campus in the Smeal Building that also will receive updates to best serve the needs of these programs.

“This project has been lsong-desired, and we are obviously very pleased that our students will have a top-notch facility in which to practice, play and gather,” said M. Scott McBride, recently retired chancellor and chief academic officer at Penn State DuBois.

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Ten percent of the project has been funded by philanthropic giving and an additional 6% of funds will come from the Student Initiated Fee.

Construction on the PAW Center and the Smeal Building renovation are both scheduled to begin in August 2021. The wildlife technology and physical therapy assistant programs are scheduled to move into their new home in January 2022 and completion of the PAW Center are expected at the beginning of the fall 2022 semester.