Students at the University of Gibraltar can now socialise and make the most of their university experience at the brand new Kishin Alwani Foundation Student Common Room.
Donated by the Kishin Alwani Foundation, the common room was officially opened by Mr Alwani himself on Thursday evening.
The space has an informal feel and features soft-seating areas for socialising and group study and a prominent mural by local artist Paul Cosquieri.
Mr Alwani said: “We are delighted to make this contribution.”
“There is no better way of progressing education than by supporting our university.”
“I hope the new common room will benefit many students at present and in the future.”
The colour scheme for the common room is yellow, blue, grey and teal and was a welcomed change by students and university staff at the unveiling.
The mural was admired by many, with an eye-catching colour scheme matching to that of the room and featured print outs of Gibraltar Chronicle and the phone book pages are plastered onto the panels with photographs of prominent Gibraltarians peeking through.
Mr Cosquieri said: “I compiled hundreds of photos, narrowed them out, and printed them out.”
“I started the mural with Chronicle pages from one day, and plastered them on, and then started adding paint and colour and the pictures, and it grew on me.”
“There are elements in the mural that are crucial to Gibraltar’s history. The Chronicle is fundamentally the daily newspaper and the yellow and white pages represent every Gibraltarian.”
“The more you look at it, the more you see. The idea is to provide a talking point for students looking at it.”
The mural took three months to put together, and Mr Cosquieri said it provided a “therapeutic” opportunity for him while recovering from a stroke.
Vice Chancellor Catherine Bachleda said the university is extremely grateful to Mr Alwani.
She added: “Our students are at the heart of everything that we do here at the university, and making sure that they have a place where they can relax, socialise and connect is in many ways just as important as the learning facilities.”
“This is a major milestone for the university.”
Minister with the responsibility of the University of Gibraltar, Gilbert Licudi said that when they were planning the university, they visited many campuses and noted that the common room area was the “hub of activity” for students.
Mr Licudi was pleased to see that such a place will now be available to enhance the student experience.
Pics by Johnny Bugeja