Skip to main content

News and Media

Open Main MenuClose Main Menu

Looking back on Agricultural Hall on the cusp of New Frontiers’ grand opening

Wednesday, May 8, 2024

Media Contact: Mack Burke | Associate Director of Media Relations | 405-744-5540 |

Oklahoma State University students, faculty, staff, alumni and donors await the opening of the $115 million New Frontiers Agricultural Hall, the modern home for the Ferguson College of Agriculture, OSU Ag Research and OSU Extension.

The cutting-edge facility is set to open this fall, 55 years after the official dedication of the front section of Agricultural Hall. A new era is soon to begin, advancing OSU Agriculture’s claim on research, teaching and Extension.

“We eagerly anticipate the grand opening of the New Frontiers Agricultural Hall and the endless opportunities our new headquarters will provide to students, faculty and staff in all three of our mission areas,” said Dr. Jayson Lusk, vice president and dean of OSU Agriculture. “The state-of-the-art research laboratories, cutting-edge teaching classrooms and collaborative spaces — including Larry and Kay’s Dairy Bar, huddle rooms, and club and study spaces — make it a student-friendly building that will foster an enhanced, vibrant sense of community we’ve come to expect and love about OSU.”

The front section of Agricultural Hall was dedicated on March 28, 1969, and the front section and wings of the original building cost $3 million to construct. As OSU Agriculture grew and developed, the need for a new building became clear.

The 194,091 square-foot New Frontiers Agricultural Hall is designed to strengthen OSU Agriculture’s land-grant mission by offering spaces that foster learning, innovation and collaboration.

“The most significant difference between the two buildings is the abundance of collaborative spaces in New Frontiers,” said Dr. Randy Raper, assistant vice president of facilities for OSU Agriculture. “We are going to have upwards of 3,000 to 4,000 square feet of what I call truly collaborative space — places with lounge seating where students, faculty and staff will be encouraged to meet up to study, work on group projects and socialize.”

One of the few collaborative spaces in the existing Agricultural Hall is the Student Success Center. The center serves as a welcoming destination for students to study alongside their peers and provides access to helpful academic resources. In the New Frontiers Agricultural Hall, the Student Success Center’s 1,280-square-foot footprint — a 400-square-foot increase from the current space — will allow greater capacity to engage students.

“The Student Success Center is the heart of Agricultural Hall,” said Taylor Triguerio, an agricultural education junior and Ferguson College of Agriculture ambassador. “There is no doubt we are starting to outgrow our current Student Success Center, so we are excited to have more space to connect with our Ferguson family.”

In addition to the expanded Student Success Center, seven classrooms and a lecture hall in the new building will accommodate up to 487 students. New features will include dedicated club and study rooms and huddle rooms located throughout the building’s three floors.

With more than 60 student clubs and organizations within the college, the club and study rooms will allow ample space for groups to meet or study. The 19 huddle rooms provide areas for faculty to interact with each other and engage with students.

Collaborative spaces also have been integrated into the design of the research area. The new facility has 25,855 square feet of flexible research laboratory space that can be rearranged to accommodate various research needs and serve multiple disciplines.

Dr. Sergio Abit, professor in OSU’s Department of Plant and Soil Sciences, said having the integration of research and teaching within the same space is unique in New Frontiers.

“To have flexible lab space that I can rearrange to suit the kind of creative teaching technique that I want to implement for a particular exercise will be an incredible tool for educating students,” Abit said.

Oklahoma 4-H Youth Development will also make its home in the new building.

Located on the second floor, the 4-H suite will house offices for the state program director, Oklahoma 4-H Foundation director, state specialists and coordinators, administrative staff and student workers. The large suite will allow staff and student workers to collaborate on statewide outreach, educational programs and events.

“New Frontiers will provide a new front door to Oklahoma 4-H and a familiar presence to many students who grew up with 4-H,” said Steve Beck, state 4-H program leader. “We are thrilled about the new home for the program and know the facility will serve many future generations of Oklahoma youth.”

Unlike the existing Agricultural Hall, which was funded by state building bond issues and federal grants, construction of the New Frontiers Agricultural Hall was made possible through private support, OSU and other resources. More than $50 million was raised from 641 private donors.

The New Frontiers campaign reached its fundraising goal in record time; it is recognized as one of the fastest capital campaigns at OSU and the first academic capital campaign of this magnitude to reach its campaign goal before the building opens.

Photos by: Kristin Knight and Provided

Story by: Ainsley Treesh | STATE Magazine

Back To Top
SVG directory not found.