Dr. Betty L. Siegel Student Recreation and Activities Center earns accolades

 REC Center Rock Wall


Architectural and interior design awards recognize facility’s form and function

KENNESAW, Ga. (Jun 22, 2016) — The soaring, angular architecture and park-like atmosphere inside the Dr. Betty L. Siegel Student Recreation and Activities Center helped the $38.7 million facility win an Outstanding Sports Facility Award at the 67th NIRSA Annual Conference & Recreational Sports Expo held recently in Kissimmee, Fla. The Center also received a Bronze Citation from the 2016 Educational Interiors Showcase, administered by the American School & University magazine and SchoolDesigns.com. 

The NIRSA judges noted the Center’s exterior, whose “west façade is composed of multiple pods topped with canted roof elements which cascade like a runner in motion,” according to the award description. “Each pod is composed of angled glass, which offers full transparency to the activities within, as well as brick and stone, which anchor the design to the campus fabric.”

The NIRSA award recognizes outstanding outdoor sports facilities opened between 2013 and 2015 that demonstrate “excellence in newly constructed, renovated or expanded recreational sports facilities at NIRSA member institutions.”

In recognizing the Center with a Bronze Citation, the 2016 Educational Interiors Showcase took note of the “great use of recycled materials,” which included cabinetry and tables fashioned from oak trees felled to make way for the construction. Judges with the American School & University competition termed the overall look of the interior a “beautiful transformation.”

“We are pleased that NIRSA and the 2016 Educational Interiors Showcase have chosen to honor the Dr. Betty L. Siegel Student Recreation and Activities Center with these two awards,” said Kennesaw State’s Vice President for Student Affairs Kathleen “K.C.” White. “The Center is among the best in the country and provides our students with a wide range of health, recreation, sports and fitness options from which to choose.”

Hughes Group Architects provided the concept for the building design; Cooper Carry is the architect of record. The construction firm on the project was DPR Hardin Construction.

Interior architectural descriptions highlight the facility’s abundant natural lighting, live plants, wood benches and natural stone that create a park-like atmosphere.

Completed in 2015, the Center is more than three times the size of Kennesaw State’s original student recreation building, which was opened in 2005. During construction, some 127,217 square feet of new space was added and another 47,175 square feet was renovated. The bi-level facility contains the latest, state-of-the-art exercise and fitness equipment.

The Center has two swimming pools, one indoors for competitive swimming and another outdoors for social and leisure opportunities. Adjacent to the indoor pool is a 47-foot rock-climbing tower. In addition to an outdoor basketball court and four indoor courts, the Center has three racquetball courts, a multi-sport MAC Gym, eight outdoor tennis courts, two sand volleyball areas, a bike shop, weight and fitness areas with state-of-the-art fitness equipment and an indoor walk/jog/run track.

Situated across from the James V. Carmichael Student Center, the Center is one of the first buildings students see upon entering the Kennesaw Campus.  A familiar place for students to participate in programs such as outdoor adventures, OwlFit, intramural sports, club sports, aquatics, and wellness.


A leader in innovative teaching and learning, Kennesaw State University offers undergraduate, graduate and doctoral degrees to its nearly 43,000 students. With 11 colleges on two metro Atlanta campuses, Kennesaw State is a member of the University System of Georgia. The university’s vibrant campus culture, diverse population, strong global ties and entrepreneurial spirit draw students from throughout the country and the world. Kennesaw State is a Carnegie-designated doctoral research institution (R2), placing it among an elite group of only 6 percent of U.S. colleges and universities with an R1 or R2 status. For more information, visit kennesaw.edu