The School of Continuing Studies celebrates its twisted new building

By Brittany Shapovalov

The twisted new building is going to be big, but the need is even bigger than the building. York University is constructing the first dedicated structure for its School of Continuing Studies. The new building, located at York University’s Keele campus, will serve as home to the School, helping to meet some of the increasing demand for its cutting-edge, innovative professional certificate programs and the world-renowned York University English Language Institute. Currently, students attend classes at various locations throughout the campus and staff are spread across four buildings.

New Building Interior

Due to COVID-19 physical distancing measures, the School is taking a bold, non-traditional approach to the construction groundbreaking by inviting the extended York community to visit its virtual groundbreaking webpage, #BiggerThanTheBuilding, starting at 9 a.m. today. The site can be visited at continue.yorku.ca/groundbreaking.

“Our students are bold, they’re confident, they’re ambitious. The building is an embodiment of who we are as a school,” said Tracey Taylor-O’Reilly Assistant Vice-President, Continuing Studies. “The building will be a twisted, iconic gateway site and showcase York’s long commitment to providing high-quality education to non-traditional students.”

Website visitors can experience the benefits of this structure by scrolling through the story of the twisted new building, seeing the renderings, and watching video interviews with students, architects from Perkins and Will and York’s leadership.

“In uncertain times, the need for innovative and responsive lifelong learning is greater than ever,” said President and Vice-Chancellor Rhonda L. Lenton. “This new, standalone home for our School of Continuing Studies demonstrates York’s commitment to serving the current and future needs of learners and employers, here at home and around the world, as they rise to the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic and the demands of a dynamic global knowledge economy.”

In March 2020, developers broke ground and began construction on the York University School of Continuing Studies’ signature new 97,000-square-foot building.

Scheduled to open for students in Winter 2022, the building will allow for expanded access to the English-language university pathways that support international students and new Canadians, and innovative programming to support professionals looking to pursue exciting careers in emerging and in-demand career fields.

In five years, the School has seen over 1,000 per cent growth in their professional program enrolments. The cutting-edge building will accommodate the School’s rapidly growing student and staff population.

“Our language programs are the top programs in North America. Our professional programs are among the most innovative in Canada and among the top programs in North America,” said Tracey Taylor-O’Reilly Assistant Vice-President, Continuing Studies. “Our physical environment needs to be an extension of the quality of the education we’re providing to our students. This building will allow us to bring innovation using the cutting-edge twisted design to create a world-class education experience in North America.”

To learn more about the York University School of Continuing Studies’ new building with a twist, visit their virtual groundbreaking site at continue.yorku.ca/groundbreaking.