I believe that this is a practical world and that I can count only on what I earn. Therefore, I believe in work, hard work.
When the college opened the doors to the Brown-Kopel Center in August 2019, there was one person who was able to step up and take on the responsibility of managing the 94,000-square-foot student support facility: Katie Hardy.
For more than 20 years, Hardy has been a vital asset for Auburn University. For most of her time at Auburn, Hardy worked with the offices of Development in Planned Giving, School of Forestry and Wildlife Sciences, College of Agriculture and the College of Engineering. While Hardy was working with engineering, she saw firsthand the commitment from alumni and donors to get behind the Brown-Kopel Center project, so she jumped at the chance to be the one who got to manage the building.
“In the development office, we were raising funds for it so you got to see it come to life both from the ground and the programming aspect of it, and I just thought it would be a great transition from the development world when we open the doors of this place,” Hardy said.
But just seven months later, the entire purpose of the building to collaboratively bring students together was turned upside down when COVID hit in March 2020.
“The students have done a great job of adjusting to the COVID guidelines. It’s nice to see them coming in, obeying the rules, learning, studying and collaborating with others, even with the restrictions that we have,” she said.
Hardy has been a huge factor in the college’s ability to keep the building open and operating during the pandemic, and she’s looking forward to the day when all study rooms and tables in the atrium are full of engineering students, gathered around preparing for that next big test.