Civic leaders, community residents and San Jacinto College employees were on hand on Wednesday, June 8 for the grand reopening of the Lehr Library, located at the west entrance of the San Jacinto College North Campus on Uvalde Road.
The 42,718-square-feet facility includes a traditional library as well as a law library, a media department and the North Campus Student Success Center. The library also includes an outdoor learning area where classes or special events can be held. The open-air arena has two tiers of seating and is surrounded by attractive landscaping.
Lyn Garner, North Campus library director, welcomed guests to the ceremony and invited them to tour the facility.
“This new library is in keeping with the vision of San Jacinto College and the goal of student success,” Garner commented. “While around you, you may see the traditional trappings of a library, the Lehr library is actually a multi-purpose building that offers both traditional research in books and modern research in electronic formats, and a diverse Student Success Center that assists students with tutoring and mentoring needs. In today’s educational world, information literacy is one of the keys to success in academic achievement. A college education at its best should excite a student to be a lifelong learner. There is no better place for that to occur than at a library.”
“At San Jacinto College, our building programs have been funded through general obligation bonds which require the support and vote of our taxpayers,” commented San Jacinto College Chancellor Dr. Brenda Hellyer at the event. “This new building is from our 2008 bond, and I want to thank our community members and tax payers for their support because without them we would not be able to build and renovate facilities to meet the needs of our students, faculty and staff.”
The new Lehr Library building replaces the original Lehr Library, which will be demolished to make way for new construction.
The library is named in honor of the late Dr. Edwin Lehr, the first president of the San Jacinto College North Campus. Lehr was a history professor when San Jacinto College opened in 1961. He was named vice president of the North Campus when it began operations at high school facilities in 1974. He became the first president of the North Campus when the position was created in 1981 and served in that role until he retired in 1997. Many friends and relatives of Dr. Lehr attended the ceremony and expressed their appreciation that the new library was named in his honor, including his widow, Dovie Lehr, and daughters, Lynda Cobler, and Holly Jones.
“I am very thankful that the San Jacinto College Board of Trustees voted unanimously to keep the new library named in honor of Dr. Lehr,” commented Mrs. Lehr. “To me, that shows how important my late husband’s contributions were, not only to the College, but also to the community. Edwin was very involved in the North Channel community by serving as the first president of the chamber of commerce, serving with the North Shore Rotary, and by being on the board that started an EMS in the community. The College and the community both meant so much to him, and he would be so pleased that the new library continues to bear his name.”
Contractors and designers involved in the project include ACR Engineering, Bay – IBI Architects, Gensler Architects, Brooks and Sparks, Inc., Civil Concepts, Facility Programming, HTS, Inc. Consultants, Rizzo and Associates, Tellepsen Construction Company, Ulrich Diederich Design, Graphtec, Facility Interiors, Walter P. Moore, Network Cabling Services, JDG Enterprises, Building Exterior Solutions, FMG, Haworth, Construction Masters of Houston, Dell Marketing and Clark, Duncan, Morris.
About San Jacinto College
Surrounded by monuments of history, industries and maritime enterprises of today, and the space age of tomorrow, San Jacinto College has been serving the citizens of East Harris County, Texas, for more than 50 years. As an Achieving the Dream Leader College, San Jacinto College is committed to the goals and aspirations of a diverse population of approximately 30,000 credit students. The College offers 186 degrees and certificates, with 46 technical programs and a university transfer division. Students benefit from a support system that maps out a pathway for success, and job training programs that are renowned for meeting the needs of growing industries in the region. San Jacinto College graduates contribute nearly $690 million each year to the Texas workforce.