Florida Southern College Buildings

Florida Southern College is an institution with a rich history—one consistently characterized by growth and development, by change. This page seeks to document the history of change that the college has seen in its more than 130-year history through its academic, residential, and administrative buildings over the years.

 JR-(1).jpg
Joseph-Reynolds Hall

One of the oldest buildings on the Florida Southern College campus today is the Hall for Women, built in 1922. The hall was rededicated as Joseph-Reynolds Hall in 1937—though the building has remained a women's dormitory - and is affectionately known as “JR.” At the time when it was one of only a few buildings on campus, Joseph-Reynolds also contained several offices,including that of The Southern and some administration. Furnishings dated at the 17th Century were provided by the New York City head of sanitation, William F. Carey, and some remain in the drawing room. In 1945, the drawing room in JR was dedicated to Eleanor Searle, a woman who had enrolled as a freshman in the music program but left to find success as a singer, allowing her to become a donor to the college. The current lobby of the hall was not built even as late as 1946; the horseshoe brick structure was open to the air prior to its closing in.

Edge.jpg
Edge Hall

The second of the oldest buildings on campus was constructed in 1922 as the Social Hall. On March 12, 1935, it was renamed in honor of E. E. Edge, one of the first large donors to Florida Southern College. The other two, L. N. Pipkin and E. T. Roux, also helped fund Joseph-Reynolds Hall. In 2000, on September 25, Edge Hall (as it is known colloquially) was rededicated after undergoing renovations.
 

Athletic Fields

One of Florida Southern College’s first athletic fields opened on October 23, 1926. Since then, it has been enlarged and renamed after L. N. Pipkin, in 1953, and hosted football games, soccer matches, and other sporting and community events.
 


Mens' Dormitory

In 1926, a mens' dormitory was completed for Florida Southern College. In 1933, the dormitory was designated as the Beta Mu fraternity house. A year after Allan Spivey was constructed in 1936, the dorm was repurposed as the Lab School. In 1943, the purpose of the building was re-altered towards the music department, and in 1964 its official name was designated as the Marjorie McKinley Music Building. Today, the building no longer stands, due to extensive development on-campus and changing codes and standards for residence halls—the dorm didn’t have commodities like air conditioning when it was first built.
 

Gilbert-gym.jpg
Ruel B. Gilbert Gymnasium

The groundbreaking for Florida Southern College’s first gymnasium was on March 3, 1927. Completed later that year, the gym was not only a home to athletics, but also to the Art Department and the Department of Expression—it featured six classrooms alongside the auditorium. In 1935, it underwent renovations, and in 1937 it was renamed the Ruel B. Gilbert Gymnasium. In 1971, further remodeling to both the interior and exterior of the building occurred, and today the building still stands, housing Florida Southern’s ROTC program.

Spivey.jpg 
Allan Spivey Hall

After two years of construction, Allan Spivey hall, which today stands as a Freshman Male dormitory, was completed in 1936. At the time, however, it hosted the school’s women; this stood until the turn of the 21st Century. The building was named after then-President Ludd M. Spivey’s son Allan Spivey, who died at the age of 8 from rabies. It mirrors Joseph Reynolds hall, to an extent, as a horseshoe-shaped building with three floors and a basement floor, designed in the colonial-revival architectural style.

Jook-(2).jpg
Fannin Campus Ministries Center

Another brick building was built near Joseph-Reynolds and Allan Spivey Halls in 1937—the Jackson Student Activity Building, affectionately known at the time as “the Jook.” The building was a place for students to socialize and grab refreshments during the school year. In 1949, the Jook was repurposed as a religion building and named after Frank D. Jackson. The classrooms were rededicated on March 10, 1980. Since 2013, however, “the Jook” has been known to students as the Fannin Campus Ministries Center, after a remodeling and rededication to commemorate Bishop Robert Fannin and his wife, Faye Fannin. It holds the offices of the Chaplain and Associate Chaplain, a kitchen, and a large meeting room where studies and gatherings are held.

Pres-House.jpg 
President's Residence

Construction for the President’s Home began in 1935 and was completed in 1937. The building, which overlooks a drive and lawn on Lake Hollingsworth, has hosted dinner parties, student meetings, and many presidents’ families over the years. In the last decade, however, the structural integrity of the house was compromised, and Florida Southern College President Dr. Anne B. Kerr and her family had to vacate the premises while renovations occurred.
 

Meditation.jpg 
Evelyn and Warren Willis Garden of Meditation

In 1938, a Methodist missionary family, Bishop and Mrs. Frederick and Welthy Fisher, came to speak at Florida Southern College. Impressed by the beauty of the campus, the evangelists, having recently returned from Benares, India, decided to donate their replica of a Hindu temple that was given to them by a converted village as a farewell gift upon their return to the United States of America. It sits just South of Joseph Reynold Hall adjacent to E. E. Edge Hall, in front of a reflection pool. The garden that encloses the temple was rededicated as the Evelyn and Warren Willis Garden of Meditation on March 14, 2009.

 


The Little Pentagon

Undoubtedly, one of the most versatile buildings in Florida Southern College’s history was
“The Ark.” Built in 1939, the structure doubled as an auditorium (beginning in 1943) during
special events and as a skating rink for students to enjoy in their free time. In 1946, it was
repurposed to hold classes for the Art Department, but in 1951 it was taken over by the ROTC
program. Serving this purpose, it earned the name “the Little Pentagon.” it served as
temporary home to the Student Union as well as the Communications Department until its
removal in 1981.

Annie.jpg
Annie Pfeiffer Chapel

On May 24, 1938, a groundbreaking ceremony was held for the First Frank Lloyd Wright building at Florida Southern College. Three years later, on March 9, 1941, the chapel was completed, and a dedication ceremony was held. Several more ceremonies have been held in Annie Pfeiffer Chapel since then, including an organ dedication in 1942 and rededications in 1991 and 1993. Due to the nature of the materials Mr. Wright insisted on to construct the chapel, years of moisture have taken their tolls on it, and Restoration efforts in 1998 and 2016 have substantially helped in preserving the historic landmark.
 

Raulerson.jpg 
Raulerson Seminar Buildings

The same year that Annie Pfeiffer Chapel was completed, 1941, three Raulerson seminar buildings were also completed. They each are named after donors: Cora Carter, Isabel Walbridge, and Charles Hawkins. The Frank Lloyd Wright-designed structures were connected into one building later in the College’s history, and today they hold FSC’s financial aid and business offices. They are on the east side of the Waterdome opposite the Watson-Fine administration building.
 

Bandshell.jpg
L. N. Pipkin Bandshell

In 1943, the L. N. Pipkin Bandshell was completed. Located on what is known today as Ingraham Avenue, the Bandshell has since served as a gathering place for students and members of the Lakeland Community to enjoy musical, theatrical, and campus-oriented entertainment such as jazz under the stars. For several years, the Center for Student Involvement, or CSI, was also housed inside the bandshell (today its headquarters is in the J. Carlisle Rogers building). The Bandshell is named for L. N. Pipkin, one of  Florida Southern College’s earliest trustees. 
 

Roux-I.jpg 

E. T. Roux Library (1945)

In 1945, the E. T. Roux Library was completed, unique in that, because of the participation of many male Florida Southern Students in the Second World War, women almost exclusively built it. When the current Roux Library was constructed in 1968, the former was partitioned, and while the common room—known as the Hollis Room—remained a place of meeting for organizations like the Student Government Association and lectures, the other half was divided into offices for the registrar, provost, and student travel. The E. T. Roux Library is named after one of the College’s earliest donors—Mr. Roux and his family, along with the Edge family and the Pipkins, were early trustees of Florida Southern. 
 

Veterans.jpg 
Memorial Magnolias

Near the end of World War II, Florida Southern College sought to commemorate those students who had gone to fight in the war and were unable to return home. To memorialize those brave servicemen, a plaque with their names was erected, and twelve magnolia trees were planted, representing each one. Today, the plaque lies in storage, but there are plans to reinstate it in the Veterans Plaza upon its completion outside the Barnett Athletics Complex in 2017.

Esplanades.jpg
Esplanades

In 1946, Frank Lloyd Wrights vision came to further completion with the connection of his buildings by the esplanades, a series of named piers that run above concrete sidewalks (each foundation piece is inscribed with the name of someone significant to Florida Southern College. No more than 7 feet high, the esplanades keep students out of the sun and rain and are lined between the original Roux Library, Watson-Fine Administration Buildings, Raulerson Seminar Buildings, Ordway Industrial Complex, Annie Pfeiffer Chapel, and Polk Science Building. Nils Schweizer, architect for the college in the post-Wright era, once wrote about them: “The esplanades not only link the buildings together, but weave in and out of the buildings themselves. Further, most all of the elements of scale, dimension and materials are embodied in the esplanade.”


The Sump

In 1947, plans were drawn and development began of the land that touched both Lake Hollingsworth and Florida Southern College. Administration intended to create a lakefront bandshell and amphitheater, which were designed by Frank Lloyd Wright in is his master plan. Unfortunately, as construction was to begin, the City of Lakeland stepped between the College and their goals, claiming ownership of the lakefront property. Development halted at “the Sump,” as it was then known by students, and as time passed, no major structures appeared on the water, though a large mound of earth had been added to the lake’s topography, as shown by aerial photos from 1952.
Today, that peninsular jut into Lake Hollingsworth is also known as Southern Landing. It features a boardwalk, constructed during an effort to beautify the land in 2003 and 2004, and a small concrete plaza. It occasionally hosts student events, but it is also is fully open to the public, due to the common walking area and popularity of Lake Hollingsworth for runners, bikers, and casual walkers from the Lakeland area.

Harvard-Hall.jpg 
East Campus and Robert Law Weeds     

Florida Southern College experienced an explosive jump in enrollment in 1948 (in part due to returning servicemen from the Second World War and the GI Bill). With the rise in students came also a need to house them on campus, and so the college commissioned designs from Robert Law Weeds for dormitories, sorority houses, and faculty buildings. East Campus was ground-broken in 1948, and by the spring of 1949, all of the new structures had been completed. Though few stand today, due to the development of updated building codes and technology (such as air conditioning), the growth stood as a milestone in the prestige of the college, and provided for further modernization as a school. The men’s dormitories, named Wesley, Emory, Trinity, Harvard, Columbia, Princeton, and Asbury halls, stood between Columbia Way and Harvard Road.

Caf.jpg
Herbert E. Wolfe Building

In 1948, Florida Southern College’s Cafeteria was completed. Though the building has undergone several renovations over the years, the building known affectionately by students as “the Caf” was named the Herbert E. Wolfe Building in 1961, and contained both the Student Commons and the College Terrace. Today, the upper floor of the building is a dining room, Wynee’s Bistro; the original terrace was enclosed to create more seating area. The term College Terrace now references a restaurant that shares the bottom floor with the Mailroom and the college bookstore.

J-Edgar-Wall-Plaza.jpg 
Waterdome

1948 was indeed a significant year for development; the Frank Lloyd Wright-designed structure completed in this year was not a building at all, but a large pond. Thanks to a massive fundraising and restoration effort by FSC President Dr. Anne Kerr, students know it today as the Waterdome. In his pursuit of a truly American system of architecture, Wright rebelled against the Neoclassicism showcased in many northern colleges and American capitol buildings— specifically, their domed concrete roofs. Instead of rehashing traditionally European art, Wright innovated it, designing a fountain for the college’s highest point that would, when engaged, would resemble a liquid dome. Unfortunately, the technology for Wright’s dream fountain was unavailable at the time when Wright was designing it. Thus, the pond stood and grew vegetation until 1968, when the College decided to pave over it, dedicating the new patio and smaller ponds as the J. Edgar Wall Plaza. It wasn’t until 2007 when Dr. Kerr’s upgrade to the pond was completed, and today thousands of gallons of water circulate through pumps underneath the Waterdome, realizing Wright’s vision.

Administration-(1).jpg 
Watson-Fine Administration Buildings

In 1949, two administration buildings were finished on Florida Southern College’s campus adjacent to Johnson Avenue. These two, designed by Frank Lloyd Wright, were named the Emile E. Watson and Benjamin Fine buildings. Since their completion, they have remained offices for administration—the President’s office, co-designed with Dr. Spivey, is housed by the Watson building. Another fascinating design feature of the Watson-Fine complex is a large pole with lights on it, jutting out from the north end of the building and esplanades. This was once lit to help freshmen locate the registrar in the evenings, but today, since the registrar is no longer housed in Watson-Fine, it serves as a historic reminder of how far Florida Southern College has come.

Fletcher.jpg 
Lucius Pond Ordway Building

In 1952, yet another Frank Lloyd Wright building was completed—an Industrial Arts building. Though some debate was given to the name of the building (when the building was first dedicated in September of 1952, it had been dubbed the J. William Horsey Building), by 1956 the edifice housing home economics and industrial workshops had been named the Lucius Pond Ordway Building. “Ordway,” as it is known by students, was remodeled in 1972, and today serves as the home of Florida Southern College’s Political Science, History, Sociology, Psychology Departments, several clubs, other classes, and the Honors Lounge. A significant piece of the Ordway building’s identity is also found in the William Fletcher Theatre. A completely circular centerpiece to the Ordway building, the Theatre in the Round has served both as a classroom space and a center for artistic Florida Southern thespians to showcase their talents. A unique facet of the Fletcher Theatre is found at its very center—when one stands at the origin point of the circle, their voice is magnified back to them. Today, the Theatre in the Round still hosts smaller shows for the arts departments, from full productions to student-led projects.

Danforth.jpg
Danforth Chapel

The companion to Annie Pfeiffer Chapel was completed in 1955—the Danforth chapel. Danforth, also designed by Frank Lloyd Wright, is a worship space with a much smaller capacity than high- roofed Annie Pfeiffer, has its own organ and classroom space in the back, and is unique: the west wall features a marvelous set of stained-glass windows. The chapel has and continues to serve as a place for small musical events, poetry readings, and lectures.
 

Pool-I.jpg
The Pool at FSC

Florida Southern College’s first swimming pool opened in 1956 behind the College Terrace/Commons on what is now Ingraham Avenue. It was a popular gathering place for students and is featured in many of the College’s yearbooks (Interlachens). The pool featured diving boards and a large, bean-shaped swimming area.
In 1997, the pool was re-modeled to accommodate the Florida Southern College swim team. Today, it is rectangular with lanes for competitions but also has a shallow pool connected to one of the corners for students to enjoy pool volleyball or simply to enjoy themselves in the water. Multiple pool parties are held throughout the year, and the lifeguards, in tandem with the Nina B. Hollis Wellness Center, oversee some pool wellness events like water aerobics.

Panhellenic.jpg 
The Panhellenic Dormitories

In 1956, a row of buildings were constructed along Lake Hollingsworth— Panhellenic dormitories that each housed a sorority. Designed by C. Dale Dykema from St. Petersburg, FL, the Panhellenic dorms were each shaped like an outline of a rectangle, with a small courtyard in the center of each complex. Being built on a hill, the dorms were two stories, with a north entrance to the top floor and a south entrance overlooking a long drive, parking area, and the lake.
In March of 1960, a massive storm preempted a flood that severely damage the Panhellenic Dorms as well as the surrounding flora. Much of the driveway was washed out, and several  cars, due to the flooding and lack of sure ground, were also damaged. Fortunately, the college could make repairs to the complex, and the Panhellenic was quickly restored. It wasn’t until this century that they came down to make way for a more beautified lakefront and other dorms—meanwhile, the Greek organizations are housed in the Publix Charities Commons.

Polk-Sci.jpg 
Polk County Science Building

In 1958, one of the last Frank Lloyd Wright buildings finished being constructed—the Polk County Science Building. The building, which holds the offices for STEM professors, labs for science classes, larger lecture rooms, and several computer labs, as well as storage for the materials used by the extensive department, is a complex of several connected buildings.  One of the most unique factors of the Polk Science building is that it features a planetarium. The first showing there was on April 7, 1960, and was an integral part of the program at Florida Southern. Over the years, however, some deterioration occurred to the original structure and equipment. Renovations were announced in 1999, and the planetarium was rededicated, with upgraded technology, on February 9, 2001. Today, the Planetarium uses Spitz 1024 Planetarium Instruments, and Florida Southern College’s Astronomy Club works to repair and maintain them while providing students with the opportunity to enjoy the stars.


Frank Lloyd Wright Memorial 

Florida Southern College’s class of 1959 dedicated a memorial statue of Frank Lloyd Wright to the College. Though the memorial was removed in 2009, the McKay Archives Center at FSC holds it in its vault as a reminder of FSC’s history. 

McKinley.jpg 
Marjorie M. McKinley Music Building

On March 13, 1963, a ceremony was held for the first installation of one of Florida Southern College’s most prestigious programs, the Ludd M. Spivey Fine Arts Center: the Marjorie M. McKinley Music Building. The building is named after the wife of Mr. Kent S. McKinley, a donor to the college at the time.

Brnscomb.jpg
Branscomb Memorial Auditorium

On January 16, 1959, Bishop Branscomb, a prominent member of the Florida Southern and the Methodist community in Lakeland, passed away. In gratitude and solemnity, the College looked for a way to memorialize him. Five years and one day later (Jan 17, 1964), Branscomb Memorial Auditorium was opened and held its first event. The building, designed by Frank Lloyd Wright-protégé Nils Schweizer, is celebrated for its acoustics and frequented by members of the Lakeland community. The auditorium is often used for events serving both students and the public, ranging from assemblies and Convocation to the Festival of Fine Arts and Florida Lecture Series. Beyond the main auditorium, the building features the now glassed-in Honeyman Pavilion and the Anne McGregor Jenkins Recital Hall, and is a fully integrated part of the Ludd M. Spivey Fine Arts Center, which was begun in 1963 and finished in the early 1970s.

Dean-Holiday.jpg
Dean Holiday

In 1964, the Florida Southern College family made a heartwarming addition: Dean Holiday, a 30-foot tall metal and canvas snowman who sits atop the Polk Science Building every winter wearing his black and gold graduation cap. Conceived by former President Charles T. Thrift and then-Vice President David L. Readdick ’46, Dean Holiday was not just a decorative piece at the College, but also a float in the Lakeland Christmas Parade. Though Dean Holiday has been edited, restructured, and relocated, he stands every winter as the College’s “Season’s Greetings” to the city of Lakeland.

field-house-(1).jpg
George W. Jenkins Field House

In 1965, the George W. Jenkins Field House was completed on the Florida Southern College campus adjacent to what is now Mr. George’s Green and the Fannin Center. The gymnasium, complimentary to the Gilbert Gymnasium, is painted with the same shade of green as the tarnished metal on Frank Lloyd Wright’s esplanades, meant to reflect the green of the citrus trees that used to line FSC’s east campus. The facility contains locker rooms and today hosts Florida Southern College’s basketball and volleyball games as well as large-scale student events like BlastOff and Glowfest. The field house is named after one of FSC’s most longstanding donor relationships—that with George Jenkins, founder of Publix Supermarkets and Lakeland legend. That very relationship continues today.

Roux-II.jpg
Roux Library (1965)

By 1965, it had become desperately clear to the College that the Frank Lloyd Wright E. T. Roux Library would be unable to sustain the substantial growth to the college that was occurring at the time. Once again, Nils Schweizer was called to draw plans for a new library. The edifice, still named for the Roux family, sits on the north face of the Waterdome opposite its predecessor on the southwest side. On the day the Roux Library was formally opened, students made a chain to pass books from the original library to the current one, and hand-over-hand transferred literature, reference books, and records over to their new home. Roux Library features a processing room, classrooms, multiple workspaces, a computer lab, and Tutu’s Cyber Café, which proudly serves Starbucks coffee. The three-story building’s holdings are extensive and the librarians are often called-upon by professors to help students navigate the many resources, both online and in-house, that the College provides.

Buckner-Theatre-(1).jpg
Loca Lee Buckner Theatre

In 1970, a final section of the Ludd M. Spivey Fine Arts Center was completed—the Loca Lee Buckner Theatre. The building was posthumously funded by Mrs. Buckner, a trustee of Florida Southern College, who had passed in October 1965 while on holiday in Italy. In passing, she had left a total of around four million dollars to Florida Southern College, which was delegated to several projects. The theatre still stands today and is used frequently for theatrical productions.

Heritage.jpg
Historic Recognition

In 1975, Florida Southern College was listed in the National Register of Historic Places. A dedication ceremony was held on February 16, 1977, to receive the honor and accompanying plaque. Today, the plaque is found outside Watson-Fine Administration building on west- campus. On March 31, 2017, another plaque was dedicated outside of Annie Pfeiffer Chapel, designating the area as a United Methodist Historic Site.

Thrift.jpg 
Charles T. Thrift Building

In 1976, development continued on-campus with the addition of the Charles T. Thrift Building, named after former Florida Southern College President Thrift (1959-76). “Thrift,” as students know it, began as the College Center, with spaces for students and alumni to meet and enjoy each other. Today, it serves as the home of the Thrift Alumni Room (which frequently hosts events from Studio Box to departmental meetings), as well as the counseling center and health center.

Chatlos.jpg

William S. Chatlos Communications Building

By 1980, Florida Southern had gained considerable developmental momentum. On February 15 of the same year, the College dedicated a building specifically for the Communications Department: the William S. Chatlos Communications Building, also designed by Nils Schweizer. One year earlier, Walter Cronkite (1979’s Honorary Chancellor), President Davis, and members of the Board of Trustees had presided over the groundbreaking for the complex. In conjunction with Frank Lloyd Wright’s vision for the college, it was not one single edifice with classrooms inside, but a set of three buildings centered around a courtyard with a live oak tree. One of the structures houses the studio, where students film talk, news, and sports shows; the second features two computer labs and a classroom; the third is the main office building but also contains the Southern newspaper lab, a fourth lab, and another classroom. These facilities,  some donated by the New York Times Foundation, provide students with immediate hands-on learning and the technology with which to be trained to enter marketing, advertising, and publishing jobs prepared to stand out.
 


Charles Jenkins Residence Hall

In 1982, the Jenkins residence hall, another Nils Schweizer-designed building, was completed. On October 29, the hall was dedicated, with its primary donor, Charles Jenkins, of Publix, present, as well as Florida Southern College President Robert Davis. Three months later, on January 23, 1983, the student lounge in the dormitory was dedicated the Weems-Macbeth Lounge. Located on the corner of Frank Lloyd Wright Way and Duke Place, “Jenkins” (as it is known by students) is the home of several fraternity brothers as well, such as Pi Kappa Alpha and Pi Kappa Phi.

Rogers.jpg 
J. Carlisle Rogers Building

The College continued its construction campaign with the J. Carlisle Rogers Building in 1984. Located between the Ordway building and Roux Library on Frank Lloyd Wright Way, the academic building served as the center for Business and Economics classes at Florida Southern until the construction of the Becker Business Building in 2016, at which point the Rogers Building became the home of the Center for Student Involvement and offices for student life administration. J. Carlisle Rogers, Chairman of the Board of Trustees from 1970 through 1978, and his wife Ruth Rogers were present at the dedication of the building on October 5, 1984.

Dell.jpg 
William M. Hollis and Dell Hall

In the late 1980s, Florida Southern College saw fit to begin updating and replacing old dormitories to match the needs and desires of the students occupying them. The first in the series in this period of renewal for the College was the William M. Hollis Hall, which is located south of Duke Place between Harvard Road and Columbia Way. Dedicated on January 24, 1987, Hollis Hall was joined by its mirror twin Dell Hall, named after Mr. Sam and Mrs. Elizabeth Dell, on November 6, 1992. Both halls house upperclass students, though Dell Hall typically houses female freshmen as well.
 

Berry-Citrus.jpg
Jack M. Berry Citrus Building

The college continued to expand academically as well, adding the Jack M. Berry Citrus Building to its roster in 1988. Located adjacent to Edge Hall, near Lake Hollingsworth, the Citrus building accommodated Citrus and Botany studies, and today contains state-of-the-art laboratories for Florida Southern College’s STEM fields. The groundbreaking for the Berry Citrus Building was held on October 1st, 1987 and was dedicated on November 4th of the following year.

Wellness-Centre.jpg
Nina B. Hollis Wellness Center

On November 1, 1997, Florida Southern College made one of its biggest additions yet. The $4 million Nina B. Hollis Wellness Center, funded by the William M. and Nina B. Hollis Foundation on behalf of Marjorie Hollis Roberts, a trustee at FSC, and designed by architect Wallis Murphey Boyington, was completed by Rodda Construction, Inc. and dedicated. The groundbreaking for the project had been less than a year before, on November 15, 1997, but the new swimming pool, group exercise and weight rooms, were completed and ready for student use. Today, around 10 different kinds of group exercises are held at the Wellness Center, from Barre and Yoga to cycling, Zumba, and water aerobics. The Center, which overlooks Lake Hollingsworth, also provides free bicycle rentals to students who want to bike around the lake or north to Downtown Lakeland.


Publix Charities Commons and Greek Quad

Just before the turn of the 21st Century, on February 12, 1999, the Publix Charities Commons was dedicated to the College. The numerous complexes, which today house most of Florida Southern’s Greek Life, replaced 1940s-era buildings on the corner of Frank Lloyd Wright Way and Ingraham Avenue. Groundbreaking was held for the Commons on April 16, 1977, and construction of the $8.9 million project, funded in part by trustees Barney Barnett, ’65 and Carol Jenkins Barnett, ’79, was completed by Marcobay Construction the following year. The structures, designed by architect Daniel Fowler of Lunz and Associates, Inc., are suite-style dormitories that house sororities, such as ΑΧΟ, ΖΤΑ, and ΔΔΔ; fraternities like ΣΑΕ and ΣΧ, among others; and their respective chapter rooms.


Davis-Arts.jpgRobert A. Davis Performing Arts Center

On March 31, 2000, Florida Southern College dedicated the Robert A. Davis Performing Arts Center, named after one of its esteemed presidents. The project took almost two years to complete (the groundbreaking took place on May 8, 1998), but stands as an effective reinforcement to the College’s arts programs.


Miller Hall

Dedicated on February 6, 2004, Miller Hall is the third and final of the residence hall complex on Harvard Road. “Miller,” completed less than a year after its groundbreaking on April 15, 2003, connects Dell and Hollis Halls. Though each hall is stylistically unique, Miller stands out in the trio for providing students with units of two bedrooms and a Jack-and-Jill bathroom in a suite style, instead of a community bathroom. This design choice was the first of a new tradition, with both Nicholas and Wesley Halls following suit later in the 2000s.

Mishalanie.jpg 
Mishalanie-Layton Garden Plaza

Some additions to FSC are elegant, yet modest: in 2006, the Mishalanie-Layton Garden Plaza was assembled in between Joseph-Reynolds and Allan Spivey Residence Halls. It is much like a small courtyard that connects the two buildings with a brick walkway. In the center of the walkway is a quaint fountain that runs with benches around it. When the Plaza was first installed, on May 18, 2006, it was open to the sky, but more than a decade later, trees have grown around and overshadowed the plaza, providing a cool place to relax for students. The Plaza was donated by Dr. Sarah M. Layton in tribute to her parents, Philip G. and Marion J. Mishalanie.


Jenkins-Barnett Residential Life Center

Announced October 29, 2005, and completed in 2009, the Jenkins-Barnett Residential Life Center is the latest in residential options for incoming Florida Southern College students. Comprised of two dorms, Nicholas and Wesley Residence Halls, the center provides a suite-style bathroom layout to students, as well as one kitchen per building.  Wesley Hall is the second of its name (the first was constructed in 1948 and removed later to accommodate more modern living quarters) but the first in the twin set of lakefront residence halls designed by architect Robert Stern; it was completed in 2007. Students in each of the 4-story buildings are sorted to floors by sex and have a view of Lake Hollingsworth, as well as a lounge on each floor that also overlooks the lake.


Christoverson Humanities Building

In 2008, a critical academic building was completed—Christoverson Humanities Building. The three-story edifice, which features classrooms, a computer lab, and the Wynee’s Moc Theatre also houses the office of the Dean of the School of Arts and Sciences, Dr. Brad Hollingshead, as well as the offices of the Department of Modern Languages. With the completion of Christoverson, which was also designed by architect Robert Stern, the Humanities department was given a home of its own overlooking Southern Landing and Lake Hollingsworth.


McKay Archives Center

When the Groundbreaking was held for the Sarah D. McKay Archives Center, in 2008, it would only be a year before a crucial division of Florida Southern College’s library staff had a building of its own. Dedicated on February 20, 2009, the Archives at FSC provides for an effective and secure way for the College to preserve its history. The building, though small, serves several purposes: the classroom on the first floor is also preceded by a gallery, which generally contains an exhibit recalling a moment in the past that the curator deems worthy of note. For example, past exhibits have featured Bob Hope’s trip to Lakeland, the Remnant Trust Exhibit of original manuscripts, and a series of photographs dated around the 1950s and 60s of Frank Lloyd Wright buildings on campus. The McKay Archives Center is also home to a Methodist Archives and the Florida Citrus Archives, which chronicle the area—and the college’s—involvement with both institutions. There is a small display room on the second floor for the Methodist Archives, and the vault on the first floor contains much of what the Florida Citrus Archives hopes to record. 



The Roberts Academy

On October 22, 2010, a definitively unique chapter in Florida Southern College’s history began with the dedication of the Roberts Academy. The charter school, which holds classes not primarily for college students but for 2nd to 5th graders, specializes in accommodating students with learning disabilities such as dyslexia. The Roberts Academy, beyond its initial purpose of educating elementary-schoolers, provides a place for future teachers to become familiarized with a teaching environment and begin working with children—one of the fastest and most immersing examples of engaged learning that FSC offers to its undergraduates.


Sharp Family Tourism and Education Center & the Usonian House

Dedicated on October 30th and 31st of 2013, respectively, the Usonian House and the Sharp Family Tourism and Education Center are two buildings that, though not specifically academic, provide deep insight into the history and culture of Florida Southern College. Both of them are architecturally unique: the Sharp Family Tourism and Education Center is a house that someone in the 1920s would have been able to order from a catalog like the Sears Catalog, have shipped to their home, and self-assembled. The Center focuses specifically on the architecture of Frank Lloyd Wright at Florida Southern College, and provides tours and souvenirs geared directly to that aspect of the institution, not to FSC’s academics or student life. The Usonian house is one of the most recently-constructed Frank Lloyd Wright buildings in the world. Constructed in 2013 with the help of MIT engineers and with architect Jeff Baker overseeing, the Usonian house was originally designed in the mid-Twentieth Century by Mr. Wright for former Florida Southern President Dr. Ludd M. Spivey as one of a set of homes designed for faculty (Dr. Spivey intended them to be built surrounding the school). Now, with the two buildings (adjacent to one another on Frank Lloyd Wright Way), people from around the world may experience a piece of Mr. Wright’s work unravaged by time.


Wynee Warden Dance Studio

On November 6, 2014, another addition to Florida Southern College’s arts programs was initiated—the Wynee Warden Dance Studio on Johnson Avenue. The building, specifically designed as a space for all dance classes at FSC, was provided by the late  Wynee Warden, an esteemed donor to the college. A dancer herself, she was present at the dedication of the facility, which was designed by Wallis Murphey Boyington Architects, Inc., the company also responsible for several other buildings on campus.


Bill and Mary Ann Becker Business Building

On November 5, 2015, the $20 million Bill and Mary Ann Becker Business Building, home to the Barney Barnett School of Business and Free Enterprise, was dedicated. Inside, Florida Southern College provides state-of-the-art learning experiences to students, from a trade floor simulator to computer labs geared towards investment and trading strategies. Also designed by Robert Stern, the building, which overlooks Lake Hollingsworth, compliments its architectural siblings along the lake (Christoverson Humanities Building and Nicholas and Wesley Residence Halls).


France Admissions Building

In 2017, Florida Southern College, due to the growing needs of the college and heightened enrollment levels, deemed it necessary to construct a new Admissions Building, one that more than doubled capacity compared to the current facility. The edifice, which was completed in January of 2018, overlooks Lake Hollingsworth between Callahan Court and Harvard Road and looks stylistically similar to Christoverson Humanities Building, due to the design philosophy of Jeff Baker, directing architect, who oversaw the construction of the Usonian house in 2012. It serves as the central office building for the marketing department and the admissions department, which oversees programs like Southern Ambassadors, Day on Campus, and Scholars Weekend.
 


Veterans Plaza

 

Barnett Athletic Complex

 

In 2016, Florida Southern College announced the renovation of its on-campus athletic fields, which serve the men's and women's soccer teams, the men's and women's lacrosse teams, and the women's softball team. Completion was scheduled for the end of 2017, but weather complications like Hurricane Irma delayed the project. In February 2018, the fields and facilities were completed and inaugurated with a ceremony led by President Dr. Anne Kerr. The softball field, specifically named the Chris Bellotto Field, is directly north of the Fannin Center and just east of the Lucius Pond Orway Industrial Arts Building, and the soccer field is east of the softball field. Both fields have a designated press box that hangs over bleachers.
 


The MocDock

 


Carol Jenkins Barnett Center for Early Childhood Education and Development

 


Computer Science Building

 


Judy and Joe P. Ruthven Beach Volleyball Courts

 


Restoration Efforts throughout the years