President Uscher’s Remarks On Opening Of Cornish Commons

At 4:15 p.m. today, President Nancy Uscher and Capstone Development Partners principal Bruce McKee cut the red ribbon to open Cornish Commons, the latest addition to the Cornish College of the Arts' campus. Following are President Uscher's remarks on this historic occasion.

My dear friends: Today we are making history.  The new Cornish Commons is the first ground up building at Cornish since Kerry Hall was built in 1921.  When Nellie Cornish opened up her piano studio in 1914, six years before women had the right to vote in the United States, she had an audacious dream to invent a new kind of school, one that would link the arts to the best thinking about education and innovation. She was a maverick and had tremendous impact on her students and the communities of her time – in Seattle, in the country and even across the Atlantic Ocean – which in her era was a world away.

The meaning of today flows  beautifully from Nellie’s dreams.  Now we have Cornish’s long-term solution to student housing.  We are further anchoring our campus in the Denny Triangle and South Lake Union. We are creating the capacity for growth of our student body and growth in our innovative academic programs. Perhaps most exciting of all is that we’re deeply committed to providing a bold, distinguished and inspiring 21st century education for artists. This impressive and elegant live/learn center will be a fundamental part of student success and the holistic student experience at Cornish. This breath-taking building will serve to encourage our students and our community to think about the grand opportunities in store for them as their lives unfold.

As we mark this historic moment of Cornish’s second century, I want to recognize our partners in this remarkable endeavor.  I also want to acknowledge the phenomenal spirit of collaboration that has permeated every aspect of this venture. Capstone Development Partners, headed by Bruce McKee.  Ankrom Moisan Architects, with the lead architect Jason Jones. And the fabulous team at Howard S. Wright, our construction partner.  Jon Bunnell, our owner’s representative on the project.  I also want to thank the many subcontractors who contributed to this brilliant effort.  

City University of Seattle and National University, you have been with us every step of the way. Welcome to your new Residence Hall!

Please join me in giving a round of applause for the incredible work that these fine colleagues have undertaken and for the collaborative ethos that has carried us through the process of creating thisamazing building!  

Before we actually cut the ribbon, I want to introduce you to the Chair of the Cornish Board of Trustees, Linda Brown, who will also recognize many in our own Cornish community who played such important roles in this incredible effort and glorious project. Thank you very much.