Jan. 10, 2023

Elevating education: Haskayne celebrates official opening of Mathison Hall with classes fully in session

Haskayne kicks off winter semester by welcoming students to its newly expanded home featuring new classrooms, group workplaces, study spaces, gathering spots, student services and more
Mathison Hall
Students gather on the main level of the newly opened Mathison Hall as opening day celebrations get underway. Riley Brandt, University of Calgary

Today, the University of Calgary is proud to announce the official opening of Mathison Hall at the Haskayne School of Business. The four-storey 10,000-square-metre Mathison Hall, attached to the school’s existing Scurfield Hall building, will greatly strengthen capacity for Haskayne’s growing community by uniting business students back to one home on campus. The building that aims to achieve LEED platinum certification adds a dozen tech-enhanced classrooms to Haskayne’s scope, while also boasting new spaces for study, group work, gathering, student advising, food services and events.

At the University of Calgary, we say we’re a place to start something,” says UCalgary President Ed McCauley. “With the official opening of Mathison Hall, we are going to help start hundreds and thousands of careers — ones that will make Canada’s most enterprising city even more so, propelled by the entrepreneurial thinking that runs through the university’s DNA. Through Mathison Hall, we are further committing to creating a place where business students will learn and thrive, and in turn, help Calgary’s economy continue to grow.”

The $90 million capital project was first announced in 2018 and was made possible by the generous gift of $20 million from Ronald P. Mathison, Calgary business leader, philanthropist, chairman of MATCO Group and building namesake. Since then, over 200 donors in the business community have contributed to the building, with Haskayne to date securing more than $33.7 million toward its $40 million philanthropic goal.

Lifelong friendship forges new future for Haskayne

Through its purposeful, student-centric and sustainable design, Mathison Hall will transform business education in Calgary by providing students with the resources and environment necessary to successfully pursue their academic goals, gain valuable educational experiences and build a treasured social and professional network.

“Mathison Hall is very well suited to its future service for the Haskayne School of Business, the University of Calgary and the city of Calgary,” says Ronald P. Mathison, namesake of Mathison Hall. “It’s highly functional, and together with the adjacent Scurfield Hall, it will renew a home base for the business school.”

He was largely inspired to make the significant donation based on his family’s long-standing relationship with the Haskayne family — particularly his late father Ken Mathison’s close-knit friendship with Richard (Dick) Haskayne, namesake of the Haskayne School of Business.

The genesis for the Mathison Hall project came about from a friendship that literally lasted a lifetime, a common bond and a deep abiding belief in a set of values that place honesty, hard work, integrity and ethics at its core,” says Mathison. “These values and ideals are well embedded in the curriculum at Haskayne and in the very spirit of the Haskayne School of Business.”

With 2022 also marking the 20th anniversary of the naming of the Haskayne School of Business, the timing of the opening of Mathison Hall carries even more significance for the Haskayne and Mathison families.

Students can look to Ron and his story as an example of what you can achieve — regardless of where you’re from, which for Ron’s father and I was the small town of Gleichen, Alberta,” says Dick Haskayne. “I’m incredibly proud of the number of people who have graduated from Haskayne who have gone on to do big things. Haskayne is not only a great business school — it’s one of the best — and Mathison Hall will only further enhance its global reputation.”

New home base for business students

Spanning over four floors, Mathison Hall offers students plenty of space to study, collaborate, connect and socialize. Some key building features include:

  • Twelve technology-enhanced classrooms, including two high-tech classrooms that boast 50-inch TV screens at every table that students can leverage for collaboration, screen sharing and presentations, as well as tiered pod-style classrooms which seamlessly promote collaboration and connection amongst students.
  • The Viewpoint Circle for Dialogue, an 80-person open-concept round room that brings people together for important discussions, lessons and gatherings. Designed to promote equity, diversity and inclusion, the circular room has ventilation to allow for Indigenous smudging ceremonies.
  • Graduate Student Floor which caters to the needs of Haskayne’s graduate students by offering all academic and career services, as well as a lounge exclusively for graduate students.
  • Collision spaces which offer ample spaces for students to work, socialize and gather which includes: 24 six-person, transparent syndicate rooms for group work or focused study, 11 meeting spaces, a fireplace area on the Robert G. Peters Floor, as well as a social staircase, food services and more.
  • Event facilities that span over twovstoreys to host meaningful public community engagement opportunities.
Mathison Hall

Inside view of Mathison Hall from level two looking down the social staircase into the sunshine.

Riley Brandt, University of Calgary

At the heart of business education and business success is one’s relationships,” says Haskayne Dean Jim Dewald. “Mathison Hall will serve as a catalyst in helping our students forge those meaningful connections. Whether it is through the modern, tiered pod-style classrooms that stimulate collaboration, the warm foyer that inspires conversation or the syndicate rooms that champion group work — our students will begin forming these relationships early and often in their academic journeys.

"In fact, it’s Haskayne’s strong relationships with the business community that solidifies our position as a top business school. Through these very relationships, such as ours with incredible donors like Ronald P. Mathison, we’re able to proudly demonstrate what the future of higher education entails.”

The vision behind the project was led by architects Gibbs Gage and Diamond Schmidt. The project was completed on time and on budget, despite global supply chain shortages, a pandemic and inflationary pressures — a testament to the dedication of project manager Duke Evans and construction company Ellis Don.

With the start of the 2023 winter semester, Mathison Hall’s classrooms are in full use for in-person learning and its meeting rooms and event facilities are bookable for students, faculty and staff. Haskayne continues to actively fundraise for the capital project aiming to achieve its $40 million target with a variety of giving opportunities still available.

Learn more about Mathison Hall, its key building features, sustainable design and community of supporters.


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