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Alumni Centre

For Athletics and Student Life

The New Home of Blue Dog Pride

Going back to Appleby College's very founding in 1911, the philosophy of developing the whole child has always included a focus on fitness and athletics as an integral component of learning.



So how did we decide that a new Athletics and Student Life Building was the next step to take in the evolution of Appleby's campus?

Over the course of 2013-2014, Appleby undertook a significant athletic review with our community. Through this rigorous exercise, we have committed to the following:

  • Renewed commitment to character and leadership
  • Introducing the co-curricular passport allowing three terms of sports for eligible senior students
  • Increased Varsity team support: including additional external coaching support, meaningful travel tournaments, facilities and equipment
  • Enhanced learning support for student athletes
  • Elevating athletics as a centerpiece for the school by bringing our community together

In order to achieve these goals for our students we completed an audit of our existing facilities and how we are currently supporting the Appleby programming. The findings presented us with the existing realities and the current program bottlenecks:

  • Not enough gym space - 1956 single gym substantially undersized for athletic activities and assemblies
  • Strong need for a larger dedicated performing arts space to accommodate school shows over 150 people
  • Size of existing facilities does not support current fitness and health programs
  • All classrooms are fully utilized at peak times of day, scheduling of classes is now limited by space, particularly in science
  • Aging facilities will need continued rejuvenation and enhancements (arena, pool, etc.)

The Impact of the Project

  • This facility (as planned) adds about 40% to the floor area of the school (excluding residences)
  • We are creating many additional spaces: three gyms rather than one, smaller spaces for health and wellness (yoga, stretch classes, meditation etc.), and an 850-seat auditorium
  • Our students will enjoy school life more as we’re adding a plethora of social spaces for community activities, informal study or simply “hanging-out”

Athletics & Physical Education:
  • Expanded and improved instructional, recreational and intramural programs for all students.
  • Significantly improved capacity and better locations for intercollegiate practices, allowing for better skills development.
  • Appropriate facilities to host more intercollegiate matches and tournaments.
  • Establishing high quality fitness and training facilities (all in one place) allowing for better preparation by intercollegiate athletes, and broader participation by all students.
  • Adding to expand the range of intercollegiate teams.
  • Providing higher-profile opportunities to use athletic matches as community and spirit builders for the entire school.
  • Potentially consolidating co-curricular times thereby shortening the school day for many students.
Community & Academic Life:
  • Providing more appropriate, safer and conducive space for all school meetings, gatherings, and events in the auditorium gym.
  • Creating a stronger sense of community and ‘home’ by enhancing informal student socializing and collaborative dynamics in a large campus room as well as smaller spaces.
  • Enhancing our community by providing three large scale locations for speakers, dances, student sales, and other special events.
  • Celebrating and promoting Appleby's heritage in an alumni boardroom and elsewhere.




A.W.B. Groundbreaking

March 28, 2017

From Appleby College's early days, healthy, active living has been woven into the very fabric of the Appleby experience. Today, through the A.W.B. Alumni Centre for Athletics and Student Life, that commitment is about to be taken to the next level.


Crane Installation

September 5, 2017

In late 2017, the A.W.B. site brought in the construction crane that would be used throughout the rest of the build phase. The crane towers over the Appleby College skyline as a symbol of the exciting changes ahead!


Steel Truss Installation

May 5, 2018

As the weather finally began to warm up, the steel trusses arrived that make up the ceiling of the A.W.B. Alumni Centre's double gym! They came loaded on massive trucks that had to be backed into campus before the crane lifted them into place. See the video on the right for an aerial view of the meticulously planned endeavour.


Exterior Brick

January 7th, 2019

One of the crowning touches that truly gives us a good sense of what the final build will look like is the installation of the exterior bricking. The sheer scale and design will come to life as construction moves into its next phase and the building becomes sealed.


Link Bridge Installation

June 8, 2019

On June 8, installation of the pedestrian bridge linking the Memorial Classroom Building with the A.W.B. Alumni Centre for Athletics and Student Life took place. 

Construction of this link literally bridged the gap between the past and the exciting new future on campus!


Together, we can transform the Appleby campus, but it will take the support of our whole community to make it happen!

Donating toward the new build

Don't miss out on being part of something great!

Should you wish to speak with someone about a gift in support of the A.W.B. Alumni Centre for Athletics and Student Life, please contact:

Jude Alexander
Chief Advancement Officer
Phone: 905-845-4681, ext. 161


By The Numbers




seat auditorium


new gym facilities


additional classrooms


more floor area on campus


completion date