Relentlessly Future Focused

Imagine a university where every student is plugged-in, from the second they set foot on campus, to the services, programs, and places proven to help them graduate and develop career readiness. Where students can have Silicon-Valley technology built into historic locations. Where health and wellness support academic outcomes.

The future is coming soon.

Be a Part of Transforming UA’s Core Campus

The Launchpad Fundraising Initiative seeks to raise $20 million in philanthropic support to re-imagine the core of UA’s campus, a place where thought, spirit and invention have touched generations of Wildcats. The redeveloped Main Library, Science-Engineering Library and Bear Down Gym, will once again be vibrant and multi-dimensional, leveraging modern teaching practices and learning strategies to place the UA at the forefront of education, transforming the space for the next century of Wildcats.

UA’s multi-dimensional student experience

The proposed student success district is unparalleled in its chance to touch nearly every UA student and will focus on UA’s comprehensive student approach that wraps intellectual, emotional, and physical well-being into a single, unbroken experience. Like modern corporate campuses, students will be able to move from group meetings in expanded collaboration spaces, to tutoring sessions, to a favorite workout class with ease.

Fueling talent into Arizona and beyond

This project will also allow the UA to continue to build Tucson and Arizona’s talent pipeline by reaching even more students and employers. And building off the UA’s leading edge work with student data, an assessment and research team will measure program effectiveness and implement new best practices into the new space, bringing start-up culture to the college campus.

The future has never looked more red and blue.

  • “The way we teach students is changing, just as chalkboards have given way to visualization walls. The workplaces they are entering are also rapidly changing, requiring us to anticipate and meet new student needs”
  • “Our physical spaces represent the greatest barrier and greatest opportunity to reinvent how students study, collaborate, and create.”

Powering Student Success

The University of Arizona’s core educational philosophy focuses on much more than what takes place inside the classroom. We believe serving the whole student – mind, body and experience – through world-class services, amplifies educational opportunity and success to propel our graduates into careers that make a measurable difference in our community, and in our world.

Our 100% Engagement campaign has proven that access to opportunities like internships, collaborative research projects and studying abroad, where students can learn and apply communication, problem solving, critical thinking and project management skills, creates a new level of workforce readiness.

And our record speaks for itself – Wildcats graduate with the experience top employers and grad schools seek. How do we know? They told us. Our recent employer satisfaction survey touted nearly 90% of employers who rate UA grads as exceeding the quality of their peers and 92% of employers who say UA grads possess the skills needed to succeed on the job. This is 70% higher than the national average of 22%.

To keep this track record, we must adapt to advancements in student learning. Students don’t learn or study the way they did five, 10 or 50 years ago. This project applies lessons from companies like Google and Nike, who have facilitated success and achievement through thoughtful visioning of their physical spaces. By connecting students to a central hub of academic resources, recreation, technology and adaptable learning spaces, we can drive a culture of student success to an even greater set of outcomes around retention, graduation – and set a new national standard for student excellence.

Our goal is for Wildcats to continue to be known as individuals readymade to seize any venture they imagine, and to tackle any obstacle the world lays before them.

  • “This project is unique because it acknowledges that your circle of resources, your level of on-campus involvement, and your ability to stay healthy and active, contribute to your likelihood to graduate.”
  • “Data consistently tells us that student experiences don’t exist in isolation, so we want to create a place where engaged learning, emotional wellbeing, and physical health mutually reinforce one another.”

research shows...

Students who use the library are 1.5 times more likely to re-enroll than non-users.

The ideal environment for study includes natural light and outdoor views.

Students who regularly use our Campus Recreation Center are retained at a 12% higher rate than students who do not.


University Libraries are the go-to place to study, collaborate and create, while Student Affairs & Enrollment Management/Academic Initiatives & Student Success (SAEM/AISS) provides some of the most comprehensive student services on campus, such as mentoring and peer advising, Think Tank, SALT services, and many more. Their partnership to collaborate, and innovate learning spaces and services, represents the university’s dedication to setting the standard for student excellence.

The University of Arizona has also become the first West Coast Creative Campus, forging another unique partnership in Adobe, who has committed $100,000 to the university in support of the Launch Pad Fundraising Initiative. This partnership will also supply the student body, beginning in the fall 2017 semester, with the full suite of Adobe Creative Cloud software, including Photoshop, Illustrator, InDesign, Adobe Premiere Pro, Dreamweaver, and more.

This partnership represents a shared philosophy between Adobe and the UA as each attempts to reshape the 21st century student experience. The UA is just the fifth school in the country to be designated an Adobe Creative Campus, with Adobe recognizing UA’s commitment to creative and digital literacy amongst its students.

  • “The traditional model of the library – a place to find books and study quietly – will be retained, but we’ll also evolve as student needs change and the roles of collaboration and technology play a larger part in student learning, and in the workplaces they will enter.”
  • “The success district builds upon the best of what we do as a university and renews it with fresh purpose and trajectory for every student.”

In 1926, Bear Down Gym opened. This UA landmark has dutifully served many functions in the 90 years since. Today, it’s a maze of cubicles, housing student support services in less than ideal facilities. With your help, Bear Down will return to its roots as a gym, with exercise classes, health and wellness services and intramural sports. Just as on a corporate campus, placing exercise options close to work spaces fosters healthy choices and spurs creativity.

The plan

  • Retro-futuristic renovation

  • Holistic health, wellness & recreation

  • De-stress and regroup with yoga, meditation, basketball or a quick workout between study sessions

UA creates a culture of student success with a range of effective, measurable support programs. The Bear Down Addition will house Think Tank, Career, Engagement & Leadership, SALT services, mentoring and peer advising and a variety of other services offering students everything they need to graduate and experience lifelong success.

The Plan

  • Integrated services

    • Career, leadership & engagement

    • Peer tutoring & mentoring

    • Academic support

  • Technology-driven spaces

  • Learning & research labs

The passage under Bear Down Gym will offer a mix of retail and food concepts to help students refuel, recharge and connect.

The Plan

Retail & food to refuel, recharge & connect

The Main Library is the go-to place to study, collaborate and create. Planned improvements will strengthen the Library’s role by providing students with new technologies and spaces that support collaboration and active learning. Updated facilities and services will prepare students for the modern workplace, which relies more than ever on teamwork and technological expertise.

The Plan

  • Collaborative, flexible learning spaces

  • Experiential learning tools

  • Cutting-edge tech labs & services

  • Preparation for tomorrow’s workplace

The renovated Main Library will contain:

  • Student collaboration spaces

  • Virtual reality studio

  • Maker space

  • Data visualization wall

  • The Zone (advanced software)

  • Tech Sandbox (latest hardware)

  • Technology lending service

  • Expert assistance

Education has changed in the last 20 years. Students spend more time working together on projects and peer-to-peer teaching. Students asked for comfortable and flexible collaboration space, more quiet areas, and outdoor study space. The renovation will provide additional space for students to study in groups and on their own.

The Plan

  • Indoor/outdoor collaboration areas

  • Quiet spaces for individual study

  • Integrated library & classroom spaces

  • Inspirational learning settings

These terraced, shaded, and landscaped plazas will offer ample outdoor seating for eating, studying, meeting with friends, or just thinking. Terraced steps will unify the four buildings, and introduce a passage under Bear Down Gym for easy movement from place to place. Outdoor WiFi and power outlets will permit seamless transition between indoor and outdoor study spaces.

The Plan

  • Landscaped, shaded spaces

  • Ample seating, wifi & power