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Location: University of Georgia, Athens, GA

General Contractor: Turner Construction

The University of Georgia, founded in 1785 and commonly referred to as UGA or simply Georgia, is well known for its main campus in the acclaimed college town of Athens, GA. This college town is quaint and friendly, but is conveniently only one hour away from Atlanta (by car).

UGA limited their students to white males for the first century of its history and began educating female students during the summer of 1903. Women were not admitted as full-time undergraduates until 1918 and racial integration was achieved at UGA in 1961. Harold Alonza Black, Mary Blackwell Diallo and Kerry Rushin Miller were the first African American students to enroll as freshmen and complete their undergraduate degrees at UGA.

As a tribute to these three individuals, a new residence hall for first-year students at UGA has been named in their honor: the Black-Diallo-Miller Hall. The president of UGA says that naming the building to include their surnames is a way of ensuring that their stories are now forever a part of UGA’s history. A dedication ceremony was held and portraits of all three honorees are on display in the lobby of the building. This year marks the 60th anniversary of the year Black, Diallo and Miller enrolled as freshmen.

The six-story, $41.4 million, 120,000 sq. ft. facility opened in 2022 to house 525 first-year (class of 2026) students. The hall features 270 double-occupancy rooms with high ceilings and the residents enjoy large windows which provide a lot of natural light, built-in closets, in-room temperature control, privacy-enhanced community bathrooms (doors to the floors and no gaps between stalls), as well as extensive shared lounge and study areas to support academic success and personal growth. Students no longer need to consider hauling in a mini-fridge because this residence hall features a Microchill refrigerating system provided by the university. This project is UGA’s first new residence hall since 2013.

“We used wood veneer doors to carry the aesthetic and sense of warmth and comfort right when you enter the building and continuing into the students’ rooms and into their bathrooms.”
– Senior Project Manager, Sabrina Bernstein – Turner Construction

Read more in the latest edition of Total Access Magazine