ROLLINS CAMPUS CENTER
The 121,000-square-foot Rollins Campus Center combines a dining hall, banquet facility, library and student center into a single, convenient state-of-the-art building that has become YHC's social and intellectual heart of campus. The glass, brick, timber and stone building has been designed to be energy efficient and environmentally friendly. It boasts many sustainable features, including the use of a geothermal well system, and received LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) Gold certification—the first facility on the YHC campus to receive this status. The center optimizes the surrounding mountain views and maximizes outdoor space with numerous expansive porches that create a relaxing space for students to socialize and study.
In 2009, Young Harris College opened its first facility built to LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) standards. The $16 million, 62,500-square-foot, three-story residential facility houses 200 students. Enotah Hall was awarded LEED Silver certification by the Green Building Certification Institute, making it the first higher education facility in the state north of the Atlanta area to achieve this level of certification. The building was designed and constructed using strategies to ensure energy savings, water efficiency, stewardship of resources and other performance metrics. The residential wings are oriented so that windows are within 15 degrees of due south or due north, maximizing daylighting while minimizing late afternoon glare. The building was constructed with regional and recycled materials, FSC (Forest Stewardship Council)-certified wood, and low-VOC paints and sealants. Robust energy-saving measures conserve natural resources and minimize adverse environmental effects. Deep roof overhangs help shade the upper terrace, and the two-story porch provides coverage at the building’s west-facing curtainwall openings. Rainchains direct water from the terrace into the planters at the base of the porch’s masonry columns. YHC made it a top priority to implement sustainable design practices that reduce the College’s carbon footprint, including an upgrade to a geothermal mechanical system with an energy recovery unit.
Recreation and Fitness Center
The College’s two-level, state-of-the-art, LEED-certified facility opened in 2010 to rave reviews and earned a spot in Athletic Business magazine’s 2011 “Architectural Showcase” of the top college/university facilities in the nation. This 57,000-square-foot facility features a first-class, fully equipped weight room and fitness center, an impressive 37-foot-high rock climbing wall, an elevated indoor jogging track surrounding the facility and a state-of-the-art 1,100-purple-seat, NCAA-regulation arena. The center also boasts multipurpose classrooms for yoga, dance and aerobics, office space and locker rooms for the athletic department, and wide expanses of windows to enjoy the surrounding mountain-landscape views.
The Village, a LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design)-certified apartment-style housing community for upperclassmen, opened in August 2011. The furnished apartments in The Village are constructed on a rolling terrain with views of the surrounding mountains and campus athletic facilities. Configured in apartments of four private bedrooms, the complex features 248 beds. In addition to four private bedrooms, each apartment includes a living area, kitchen and washer and dryer. The "village" atmosphere is facilitated by expansive porches, designated areas for grilling and abundant green space surrounding the apartments.
In Fall 2013, YHC opened the doors of a new residence hall that provides an additional 226 beds for freshmen. This LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design)-certified residence hall is configured in “pods,” or small communities consisting of students living in different sizes and styles of rooms surrounding a common bath area. Each pod also features lounges and study alcoves, providing students with ample areas to study and socialize. The innovative pod concept is a growing trend in residence life nationwide. It provides both living and learning spaces that encourage student interaction and foster a sense of community during their first couple of years on campus.
After laying dormant for a number of years, the YHC farm, located west of the college campus near the edge of Towns County, is seeing new life. The one-acre plot is now being used to cultivate plants and trees.