If we had to define Kenyon's genius loci—the spirit of the place—one thing we'd note is the way modern fits with traditional. Timeless beauty endures here. But we are always responding to new needs and adopting new technologies. From the science quad to the athletic center, facilities are state-of-the-art. And they're often architecturally stunning. Century-old stone and sleek contemporary glass harmonize on a campus that many feel is one of the nation's most beautiful.
A few of Kenyon's noteworthy facilities:
Organized in a handsome quadrangle, our science buildings provide spacious, well-equipped labs for classes and student research, along with modern, technology-rich lecture halls. The buildings were designed to serve Kenyon's strengths: small classes, hands-on learning, access to sophisticated instruments, collaboration among students and professors. Lounges, study areas, and special-purpose libraries encourage interchange—and, because they're often located in the "bridge" areas linking buildings, these common spaces bring together students and faculty from different disciplines. Stepping outdoors just once, you can circumnavigate the sciences, going from Hayes Hall (home of physics and mathematics) to Tomsich Hall (chemistry), then on to Higley Hall (biology) with its Fischman Wing (biochemistry and molecular biology), and finally to Samuel Mather Hall (psychology and neuroscience).
Olin and Chalmers libraries
In the electronic age, Kenyon's "library" isn't merely a building but a vast collection of resources, available wherever a computer is turned on—and that includes your residence-hall room, the public computer labs, indeed pretty much everywhere on this wireless campus. Consortial arrangements give you access to more than 11 million titles items beyond the College's own holdings, plus more than 200 databases, 330,000 e-books, and 12,000 electronic journals. But there is in fact a physical library building—two connected buildings, actually. They hold over 1 million items, including books, government documents, audiovisual items, electronic texts, and periodicals. More importantly, they house a staff of librarians and information-technology experts who can help you with everything from rare manuscripts to new software.
The new Gund Gallery, home to the Department of Art History and to more than 6,000 square feet of exhibition space, promises to amplify visual literacy and link the exhibitions and programs it initiates to the curriculum.
The Horvitz Art Building is a cutting-edge, studio arts facility of 40,000 square feet, expected to open in 2012.
The center of musical activity on campus is Rosse Hall, a Greek Revival landmark that has been renovated to house an elegant 650-seat concert hall. The lower level features practice and private-lesson rooms. Attached to Rosse is the recently built Storer Hall, with a sleek 135-seat recital hall, a dramatic reception area, rehearsal facilities, a seminar room, and a computer-equipped classroom.
Theater and Dance
Larger, faculty-directed productions, in both drama and dance, take place in Bolton Theater, a modern 389-seat theater with a thrust stage that lends itself to a variety of configurations. Bolton shares ample backstage and technical facilities with the neighboring Hill Theater, a traditional proscenium stage that seats 186 and hosts a busy schedule of student productions. The large number of student theater groups also make use of the intimate Black Box Theater in Gambier's Old Bank Building. Dance classes are held in the Bolton Dance Studio building as well as the Kenyon Athletic Center.
The Horn Gallery
The Horn Gallery's slogan, "still dreaming at the horn gallery," sums up what this student-run art space is all about. Bands, jam sessions, art, poetry: if you can imagine it, you can bring it to life at the Horn. The modern, barn-inspired building near the heart of campus has two levels, both wide open for maximum flexibility.
Dining: Peirce Hall
Rising grandly in the center of campus, Peirce is home to one of Kenyon's signature spaces, the Great Hall, where students take their meals amid wood paneling, lofty carved rafters, and stained-glass windows depicting scenes from literary classics. A complete renovation has enlarged the kitchen serving area and allowed for a variety of food stations and more extensive use of local farm products. The renovation yielded Thomas Hall, an all-new dining hall, with large windows overlooking the countryside. A lower level includes private dining rooms for special gatherings and a large "pub" space for casual and late-night eating. Other facilities here include Peirce Lounge, the site of many Common Hour talks and receptions; the Bemis Music room, for classes and recitals; and offices for student organizations.
The Kenyon Athletic Center
Huge weight and fitness room. Light-filled indoor track. Tennis courts, squash courts, racquetball courts. Competition arena, recreational gym, mirrored rooms for dance and fitness classes. A pool befitting a national dynasty. With its top-flight facilities and spectacular architecture, "the KAC" has become a favorite place to work out, and hang out, since it opened in 2006. Varsity teams, intramurals, and individuals all use the KAC, often at the same time. It's that big. And it seems even bigger, with soaring trusses and glass walls accentuating the sense of space and light.
Brown Family Environmental Center
This 380-acre nature preserve bordering the Kokosing River includes woodland, prairie, and wetland habitats, as well as gardens. Biology classes and Summer Science Scholars conduct research here. Others come to ramble along the six miles of hiking trails or to participate in bird-watching walks, nature talks, campfires, and star-gazing sessions.