We have updated our Privacy Policy to provide you a better online experience.

A New Front Door

Vanguard University opens expanded and remodeled Scott Academic Center.

Vanguard University in Costa Mesa, California, unveiled an expanded and remodeled Scott Academic Center on Saturday to nearly 600 community members, civic leaders, administrators, students, and others. The expansion will allow for Vanguard to increase classroom capacity by approximately 1,500 students per day.

Grand opening attendees included Costa Mesa Mayor Pro Tem Jim Righeimer, Costa Mesa Chamber of Commerce President Kyle Woosley, and Sen. John Moorlach of California's 37th District.

"We offer this building as a public landmark, tying Orange County's past to its future," said Vanguard University President Michael J. Beals. "With its authentic Santa Barbara-style architecture, Scott Academic Center now serves as a welcoming beacon for a new generation of academics, idealists, and thought leaders prepared to lend influence to some of the most-pressing challenges of our time, including the future of health care, social justice issues, and the integration of military veterans into civilian life."

Vanguard opened Scott Academic Center in 1976 to honor John B. Scott, the fourth president of the college, who also served as a professor, dean, and librarian. The utilitarian design of the center met the needs of the student population at the time, and reflected the architectural style that defined the decade and matched the tempo of Orange County's rapid growth.

Over the next three decades, however, Vanguard University evolved. Its student body population swelled, attracted to the institution's liberal arts and professional studies programs. Administrators realized the existing Scott Academic Center could offer greater value and command a stronger spot among Orange County's rich academic community with an expansion and technologic updates.

In 2014, the university selected Anthony Massaro of Orange County-based Mars Hill Studio as the architect and broke ground on the redevelopment. Vanguard challenged Massaro and his team to redefine Scott Academic Center as a spiritual and academic sanctuary to welcome students as well as a space for them to grow into leaders of tomorrow. In addition, university leaders desired an opportunity to begin its first stage of a cohesive design aesthetic throughout its campus architecture to pay homage to Costa Mesa's earliest history as Native American and Spanish communities.

Vanguard unveiled the newly remodeled and expanded Scott Academic Center to the public on Saturday, with Beals calling it the inviting "front door" to the school.

The university remodeled the original 23,076 square feet of the center and expanded it by 16,135 square feet to house all student services together for the first time in college history.

Within the new three-story education wing, students can gather in a nursing simulation lab endowed with technology and instruments found in major medical centers. The new facility also includes the Global Center for Women and Justice, a Veterans Resource Center, and a Diversity and Inclusion Department. Ten classrooms with immersive technology to facilitate learning were added. 

Vanguard University funded construction through a capital campaign supported by 350 donors who committed more than $7 million.