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Decker Hall

Center of Academics

In 1970, Decker Hall was completed, replacing Old Main as the central academic building on campus. In 88,000 square feet of space, it houses classrooms, offices, the mail center, an observatory, the registrar office, a computer center, the Center for Public Service, limited dining services, and a number of lounges and study spaces. It is the home of many of Anderson University's academic departments, including History & Political Science, Foreign Languages, Sociology, Education, Mathematics, and English.

Decker Hall was built with the help of a $1 million government grant under the 1963 Higher Education Facilities Act, the largest grant Anderson University had ever received. The building was designed with a contemporary style, in contrast to the Georgian Colonial buildings on campus. 

In 1974, the Rozelle Observatory was built for the study of astronomy. During the academic year, the observatory is frequently open for students of all majors to stargaze. At the time of its dedication in 1977, the telescope was one of Indiana's largest, with a 14-inch Celestron telescope that magnified 100,000x and could be used for photography. Students now use a 16-inch reflecting telescope and can follow @AUTelescope on Twitter. The observatory is named in memory of Harold E. Rozelle.

As part of Anderson University's 75th-anniversary celebrations, the original 1906 Old Main cornerstone, which was removed before demolition in 1968, was placed in the lower level outer wall of Decker Hall. A time capsule was placed behind the stone, containing, among other things, the 1992 academic catalog, a copy of the AndersonianGuide of Soul and Mind, a 1992 mint set of coins, and a 1917 Liberty half dollar. The capsule is set to be reopened in 2092. 

A two-story Welcome Center was added to the east end of the building in 1995. It currently houses the Admissions and Financial Aid Offices. In 2010, the Robert and Marjori Austin Education Technology Laboratory was built, providing resources and a setting which models a K-12 classroom environment for the School of Education.

Decker Hall is named for Philip and Phoebe Katherine Decker, Anderson residents and parents of Ellnora Decker Krannert, who donated much of the remaining 2.6 million needed for the building's construction.

References

  • Callen, Barry L. Guide of Soul and Mind: The Story of Anderson University. Anderson: Warner Press, 1992. Print.
  • "Decker Hall" Folder, A.C./A.U. Buildings Documents, Anderson University and Church of God Archives
  • "Old Main" Folder, A.C./A.U. Buildings Documents, Anderson University and Church of God Archivess