Most of us current students at Covenant College don’t remember Carter Hall not being under renovation. We don’t remember the rickety spiral staircase up the tower or the Washington Monument-like dome. However, renovations are finally and officially done, and late Thursday afternoon, October 5, marked a brief rededication ceremony.
Attendees included the Board of Trustees, staff, faculty, and a handful of students. A few attendees like Covenant alumnus Joel Belz can remember the days of Carter Hall’s renovations in the fall of 1964. Fifty-three years later, Mr. Joel Belz witnessed the new renovation and rededication of Carter Hall, in fall 2017.
While the audience sat facing Carter Hall, President J. Derek Halvorson began the ceremony with a welcome statement, followed by a prayer from Chairman of the Board Mr. Dick Bowser. Next, former President of Covenant College, Frank Brock, provided a brief history of Carter Hall, reminiscing about the days before air-conditioning and thus consoling parents during O-week with, “Don’t worry, it’ll cool off in a couple of weeks.”
He described how, before most of the rest of campus was built, nearly everything took place in Carter Hall, from classes to chapel. Even more hard to believe, stray pets and animals would sometimes find their way into his office. But concerning the changes over the years and the renovations more recently, Mr. Brock explained, “Nothing in this world will not be costly to restore from its fallen state.” Looking at Carter Hall now, it is easy to conclude, despite the costs, restoration is worthwhile.
Following Frank Brock’s brief history, Dr. Scott Finch led the audience in the college hymn “All for Jesus.” His booming voice echoed off the walls of Carter as students peered out from their bedroom windows. After a final prayer from President Halvorson, attendees enjoyed a light reception prepared by Chartwells, which appropriately included pastries designed with icing impressions of Carter Hall.