On the morning of Sept. 9, the entire D-E community gathered in the Large Gym of the School’s Modell’s Sports Complex for the 2015 annual All-School Opening Assembly. Featuring performances by Malachi Samedy ’22, Allan Festekjian ’17, Emma Battle ’18, Tim Holt ’17, Seon Layne ’16, Peter Kang ’17, Scott Sue ’17, Jahod Silver ’18, Ehren Layne ’19 and Ben Zhu ’19, among others, the assembly had an unspoken charged atmosphere thanks to the Hajjar STEM Center, which was officially dedicated the night before but was just moments away from opening for the students, faculty and staff to see for the first time. Head of School Dr. De Jarnett brought to the stage Mark Thaler, AIA, the architect of the Hajjar STEM Center from global design firm Gensler, as well as the leadership donors, Dr. John and Sharon Hajjar, to talk about the ideas behind the building. All the hype that was generated during the two-hour assembly led to the big reveal following the All-School BBQ on Leggett Field, when each school division took turns visiting the 28,000 square-foot building. Students young and old and teachers new and returning marveled at the 4×4 LCD screens, the hallway-less floors surrounding the double-height clerestory, and natural lighting aplenty thanks to the windows not only above but all around; most of the classrooms have floor-to-ceiling glass walls with quotes from or facts of luminaries like George Washington Carver, Albert Einstein and Pythagoras.
The first classes at the Hajjar STEM Center began that afternoon starting at 1:30 p.m. Click here for more facts and figures on the STEM Center, and also check out The Record’s article on the dedication.