Commencement As Usual: Kibbie Construction Schedule Won’t Affect Graduation Ceremony

Tuesday, February 10 2009

Feb. 10, 2009 Written by Tania Thompson MOSCOW, Idaho – Planned life safety construction work at the University of Idaho’s ASUI-Kibbie Activity Center will not impact commencement in May. Registrar Nancy Krogh confirmed that arrangements have been made with the contractor handling life safety construction work on the Kibbie to make the facility available for the comprehensive, universitywide commencement ceremony to take place as scheduled in Moscow on Saturday, May 16. “While we are still working out some of the final details, I want to confirm that we will hold the commencement ceremony as planned this spring in the ASUI-Kibbie Activity Center,” Krogh said. “Individual colleges will then hold receptions immediately following the large ceremony, as we have done in the past.” Additional details about commencement will be forthcoming. In December 2008, the university’s Board of Regents authorized the institution to secure a $10 million finance package from Wells Fargo Bank to fund an initial phase of life safety work in the Kibbie Dome. This part of the project will replace the west end wall, provide west end exiting, add fire suppression in the interstitial space in the Dome roof structure, add handrails in the seating aisles, provide for some of the required smoke exhaust systems, and make other life safety and code mitigation improvements. Construction work is expected to begin in March shortly after the conclusion of the Lionel Hampton International Jazz Festival and is expected to be completed in late August or early September. The university community will be updated about the construction schedule and access to the Dome during construction. Walsh Construction, based in Portland, Ore., has been selected to oversee the project. The university remains committed to a phased effort to complete all life safety work in the ASUI-Kibbie Activity Center. “When all the life safety work is completed, we will have made tremendous progress,” said Brian Johnson, assistant vice president for facilities. “We will have replaced both end walls, provided the additional egress, provided robust suppression and smoke exhaust systems, made HVAC improvements, made ADA compliance improvements, and integrated with the desired and planned improvements to the Dome to better host and support university and community events.” Vandal Friday will proceed as scheduled on March 26-27 in the Kibbie Dome, as will a large science conference in June. Johnson credited Walsh Construction for accommodating the university’s needs for key events and activities within the Dome in its planning and work schedules. The life safety work is separate from renovations and improvements supported with private funding. The privately funded component is focused on the game day/fan experience and will be completed in phases over a number of years. # # # About the University of Idaho Founded in 1889, the University of Idaho is the state’s flagship higher-education institution and its principal graduate education and research university, bringing insight and innovation to the state, the nation and the world. University researchers attract nearly $100 million in research grants and contracts each year; the University of Idaho is the only institution in the state to earn the prestigious Carnegie Foundation ranking for high research activity. The university’s student population includes first-generation college students and ethnically diverse scholars. Offering more than 150 degree options in 10 colleges, the university combines the strengths of a large university with the intimacy of small learning communities. For information, visit Media Contact: Tania Thompson, University Communications, (208) 885-6567,

About the University of Idaho
The University of Idaho helps students to succeed and become leaders. Its land-grant mission furthers innovative scholarly and creative research to grow Idaho's economy and serve a statewide community. From its main campus in Moscow, Idaho, to 70 research and academic locations statewide, U-Idaho emphasizes real-world application as part of its student experience. U-Idaho combines the strength of a large university with the intimacy of small learning communities. It is home to the Vandals. For information, visit