Image courtesy of the Colorado School of Mines.

You mean to tell me that Green Center is open?

From the summer of 2017 to November of 2019, when International Day was hosted there, Green Center sat dormant. While it was closed to students, construction workers were removing asbestos, resealing the roof, and remodeling. Now with the first and second floors finished and the international office to Green Center moving to Suite 219, the building is coming back to life. With so many important offices located there and a host of unique features, its time we grab our hard hats and embark on a journey to learn about Green Center.


From the outside, Green Center has a very classical brick look, however, it features glass accents, distinguishing it from Coolbaugh and Alderson. For the most part, the inside shares the old but extravagant for the time look. Given that Green Center received a large amount of private funding from Cecil H. & Ida Green, it is logical that the outside would be a little more eye-catching than other older buildings on campus. Most of the entrances to Green will funnel you towards its’ grand lobby, a space fitting of the name. The grand lobby is larger than the lobby area that houses the information desk in the student center. The purpose of such a large open space was to host exhibitions. Combined with the halls that feed into it, the grand lobby has more than 7,000 square feet of open space, making it feel like one of the most spacious buildings on campus. The rest of the rooms on the first floor adopt a wedge shape. The feeling of openness in the grand lobby continues into Bunker Auditorium and Friedoff Hall, which are two of the most unique rooms on campus. Bunker Auditorium is our campus’ own 1,400 seat theater, with seats split between two levels. Not only is it interesting to find an auditorium on a campus with such a heavy STEM focus in the first place, but Bunker Auditorium is also the largest auditorium in all of Jefferson county. Friedoff Hall is an event hall that spans two stories and can be split into three smaller event halls. With entrances to Friedoff Hall from the basement and floor one and the wedge-shaped of the room, Friedoff feels so distinctly unlike the rest of campus. Almost every other building on campus is based on rectangles and squares, but the weird wedges of Friedoff and the rest of Green one make it truly unique. The basement floor, which is still under construction, is mostly smaller square classrooms with a brick motif. The second floor, however, is made of sleek and sharp angles, which contrasts with the soft and worn look of the rest of the building. The top floor of Green Center reminds me of CoorsTeck, pretty to look at, but not as creative as the wedge rooms on the first floor.

Features of the third floor

Beyond being pretty to look at, the second floor of Green Center contains many offices that a Mines student may want to visit. As mentioned before, the international office recently moved to the top floor. Green Center suite 212 currently houses the Trefny center, which works to improve teaching and learning at Mines. Additionally, the testing center, the department of geophysics, the office of graduate students, the office of continuing and professional education services, and several geophysics office suites are located on the second floor of Green Center. There are other meetings and study spaces on the second floor of Green Center along with several computer labs. New study spaces on the third floor of Green Center are available if you are looking for somewhere you can still be productive, but are looking for a change of scenery.

So why should I care exactly?

The grand lobby and Friedoff Hall provide space to hold events that were previously held in the student center ballrooms. Perhaps most importantly as a consequence of this extra space, next fall some career day events or booths may be moved to Green Center. The reopening of Bunker Auditorium gives Mines Little Theater and Music at Mines a dedicated space to perform on campus again. These organizations’ already amazing performances are sure to be made even better by having a space to perform on campus. Before Green center closed in 2017, freshmen orientation was even held there. With all the money spent on remodeling Green Center, some aspects of freshmen orientation may return in the upcoming years. If meeting with people and watching amazing performances by fellow Orediggers aren’t your thing, Green Center still has something for you. Metals hall and petroleum hall on the first floor open up 150 and 122 seats, respectively, for testing. For comparison, the dreaded Coolbaugh 209 contains 270 seats. Hopefully, this means that common hour exams will have more room options and teachers will have a better chance of getting the testing dates they want. All these opportunities are sure to make Green Center a thriving part of campus, but why take my word for it? Set aside 15 minutes to wander around Green Center, I promise you that you’ll find something interesting.

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