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07-11-2008

Clarkson University's Walker Center Renovation Dedicated

[A photograph for media use is available at http://www.clarkson.edu/news/photos/walkerdedication.jpg .]

New York State Senator Darrel J. Aubertine joined Clarkson University President Tony Collins, Clarkson Athletic Hall of Fame alumni and local high school athletes for the dedication of the $1-milllion state appropriation-funded major renovation of Walker Center today. Clarkson University's Walker Center Renovation Dedicated

Walker Center, the storied former NCAA Division I hockey arena, has been reborn as a multi-use athletic practice facility with a synthetic playing surface for soccer, lacrosse, and other field sports.

"This really is a magnificent facility," said Aubertine. "To have had a small role in this is an honor for me. This really is a community effort. I can't tell you how pleased I am with the job you have done."

"We'd like to thank Senator Darrel Aubertine," said Collins. "The renovation of this facility would not have been possible without his support. This is not just a facility for Clarkson University, but it is a community facility. The high school and middle school athletic complexes have been undergoing renovation this past year and we were able to step forward and share this facility with them. That will continue as we provide access to area school athletes.

"We're not just renovating Walker Arena, but we're creating a world-class athletic complex for soccer and lacrosse inside, and a turf field outside. This is the beginning of a riverfront athletic and recreational complex that will truly be second to none in the country, and highlight and celebrate our environment."

Aubertine and Collins toured the facility to see the new field turf, renovated locker rooms, new roofing and heating systems, and other improvements.

The Clarkson hockey arena officially became known as the Murray G. Walker Hockey Arena in 1975. Known affectionately as the "father of Clarkson hockey," Murray Walker had teamed with Gordon Croskery, an instructor in mechanical engineering, in 1921, to organize a Clarkson hockey team. He scheduled the games every year until the sport became a recognized part of the athletic program in 1935. Built in 1938, the arena replaced the outdoor ice rink in Ives Park. Artificial ice was installed in 1952. The building was renovated further in 1971, when additional seating and heating were installed.

Clarkson University crosses the boundaries of disciplines, nations and cultures in order for discovery, engineering innovation and enterprise to come together. As a result, faculty and graduates grasp the full impact of their calling, direct their research to the world's pressing issues and lead with confidence and distinction. One in seven alumni is already a CEO or other senior executive. Located in Potsdam, N.Y., just outside the six-million-acre Adirondack Park, Clarkson is home to 3, 000 students preparing for rewarding careers through 50 rigorous programs of study in engineering, business, arts, science, and health sciences, as well as unparalleled outdoor recreation and life experiences beyond the classroom.

Photo caption: New York State Senator Darrrel J. Aubertine (left) joined Clarkson University President Tony Collins (right), Clarkson Athletic Hall of Fame alumni and local high school athletes for the dedication of the $1-milllion state appropriation-funded major renovation of Walker Center today.

[News directors and editors: For more information, contact Michael P. Griffin, director of News & Digital Content Services, at 315-268-6716 or mgriffin@clarkson.edu.]

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