Leon Levine thanks UNC Charlotte at Levine Hall dedication. Photo by Alexandria Sands.

 

Driving through the main entrance of UNC Charlotte, students, staff, faculty and visitors are welcomed by the University’s most prestigious building, the Leon and Sandra Levine Residence Hall, which holds over 400 of the University’s most accomplished and capable students- members of the Levine Scholars Program and the Honors College.

Opened in 2016, Levine Hall is the first residence hall at UNC Charlotte that contains an academic wing, which includes administrative offices for the Honors College and Levine Scholars Program along with student work-study areas, faculty work stations, private one-on-one spaces and adjacent seminar spaces that can be combined for large functions. The building also holds the Levine Scholars Richardson Suite, dedicated to Mike and Kelli Richardson, which will be used to house visiting faculty or lecturers.

“We definitely have a stronger sense of community because we all live across the hall from each other and we get to live with the upperclassmen and the lowerclassmen,” sophomore Levine Scholar Sydney Welch said.

On April 13, Levine Hall was formally dedicated to Leon and Sandra Levine, who have donated over $18 million to the Levine Scholars Program through their foundation. The Levine’s worked with the University to create the program in Fall 2009. Since then, approximately 20 scholars have been chosen each year based on their scholarship, leadership and civic engagement during high school.

 

“I just would like to thank [Leon and Sandra Levine] so much for the opportunities that I’ve had in my life that I wouldn’t be able to do without them and the life changing experience of being on this campus as a Levine Scholar,” sophomore Levine Scholar Esteban Mendieta said.

“When it comes to engaging in the community, our students could not ask for better role models than Sandra and Leon Levine,” Chancellor Philip L. Dubois said.

Levine Scholars receive a four-year scholarship that includes full tuition, room, board, a grant to execute a service project of their design and four summers of experiences, which includes a backpacking trip, two internships and study abroad. The total value of the four-year package is estimated at $105,000 for in-state students and $155,000 for out-of-state students, according to the Levine Scholars Program website.

Sophomore Levine Scholar Esteban Mendieta speaks on his experience in Levine Hall. Photo by Alexandria Sands.

 

“Being a Levine Scholar means that we are challenged and we are to challenge others around us,” Welch said.

The Levine Scholars are required to live in the building for their first two years and are encouraged to stay as juniors and seniors.

The construction for the facility began in May 2015.

North Carolina General Assembly Representative William Brawley, a UNC Charlotte alum, advocated for the bill that approved the building of Levine Hall.

“It was a privilege to run the bill that made this possible … But I will tell you, it was easier than it would have been had UNCC not had one thing going for it. You were able to get broad support because you deserve it,” Brawley said.

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Alexandria Sands is the Niner Times' managing editor. She is a senior studying Communications with a double minor in Journalism and English. Sands' work has been published in The Charlotte Business Journal, Creative Loafing, The Gaston Gazette, The Shelby Star and The State Port Pilot. When she's not in the newsroom, you can catch her reading a book on Oak Island. Reach her at managing@ninertimes.com or @alexsands_.

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