Antelope Valley Community College District celebrated a “topping out” ceremony to mark the placement of the final beam on Antelope Valley College’s new Cedar Hall. The HMC Architects design team, trade partners, community representatives, and faculty and staff attended the event to celebrate the construction milestone.

As the primary multi-disciplinary instructional building on campus, Cedar Hall will play an integral part in each student’s education, providing a place to connect and learn in different ways: from classroom instruction, faculty mentorship, collaboration with peers, informal group study, to focused individual study. The foundation of this is fostering cohorts of students and learning communities with easy access to faculty and instructional support. This seemingly simple approach, making students feel accepted with a sense of belonging—the hallmarks of inclusion—improves outcomes and helps students persist through challenges.

Knowing that student success depends on keeping them connected and engaged on campus, AVC’s goal was to create an instructional building that provided students a place to connect and learn in different ways, from traditional direct instruction, faculty mentorship, collaboration, informal group study, and of course more focused individual study. Faculty offices, study pods, kitchenettes, and a communal art gallery surround the classrooms turning the building into a student hub. Conceived of as an evolution of the double-loaded corridor classroom building, the plan is separated into two halves with a collaborative student space at its heart. Cedar Hall is on track to engage students, improve their campus experience, and increase rates of graduation and transfers to four-year degree programs.