Ribbon cutting marks official opening of new Lion's Den Café, Student Union

Ribbon Cutting ceremony.

Penn State DuBois Student Government President Amber Metzger, center left, and Lion's Den Café Manager Shelly Caine cut the ribbon on for the opening of the new Lion's Den Café, joined by Student Government representatives.

Credit: Steve Harmic

DUBOIS, Pa. — On Monday, members of the Student Government Association cut the ribbon on the newly renovated Lion's Den Café and the Student Union at Penn State DuBois. Located in the Hiller Building, the Student Union and café areas were just one part of a major renovation project in that building that took place throughout the fall semester.  Work was completed in December, making this popular area once again available for student use.

A fully upgraded kitchen includes all new equipment and appliances, and expanded space. New flooring, ceiling, lighting and wall treatments have been installed to upgrade the entire area, providing an up-to-date and appealing atmosphere for students.

Also included in the Hiller Building renovations were upgrades to the building's heating and cooling systems, such as the replacement of outdated boilers. Existing restrooms underwent a complete transformation to fully accessible, Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) facilities, and one new unisex bathroom was added to the building. The addition of an elevator also helps to make the building fully accessible to everyone. 

"The renovated kitchen and union areas are beautiful and the installation of the elevator allows for better access to the building," said Director of Student Affairs Rebecca Pennington, who credited the perseverance of students on the Facility Fee Committee in working with administration to help set the project in motion. "We hope all of you will utilize this space, eat in the Lion’s Den Café, study, meet your friends here, and participate in programming and all of the good things that happen in a space like this. It is always a great feeling to be a part of change like this and we are glad you are here to celebrate with us today."

Student Government Amber Metzger said, "This new union will be a place for pride. It will be here that most of the events on campus take place. Musicians, comedians, artists, games, shows, and so on. They are all learning experiences and make the time on this campus even more enjoyable. This is where you will meet many friends, study for exams, and make unforgettable memories."   

The total cost of the Hiller Building renovations is estimated at $3,500,000. Funding has been provided by the Office of the Vice President for Commonwealth Campuses Madlyn Hanes, the Facility Resource Committee at University Park, and the student facility fee.

Constructed in 1976, the Donald S. Hiller Building is named for the former campus executive officer, who served from 1950-1978. In addition to the Student Union and Lion's Den Café, the building houses the campus auditorium, the bookstore, the library, and the Offices of Student Affairs, Student Engagement, and Career Services, as well as faculty offices. This is the first major renovation the building has undergone since its construction.