Students Celebrate Elevator Addition in Historic Elizabeth Hall
Editor’s note: This is an update from a previous post.
Elizabeth Hall — part of Stetson’s Campus Historic District, which is listed on the National Register of Historic Places — is making history again. The building is getting an elevator. And it’s cause for a student celebration.
Although construction work won’t take place until May 14 through Aug. 9, the Student Government Association hosted an event with live music and a ceremonial toast outside Elizabeth Hall on Wednesday, Feb. 7. The event also featured guest speakers, with plenty of students in attendance.
The new elevator will access all three floors of Elizabeth Hall, including the raised section of the building’s south end of the third floor, according to Scott Thacker, Stetson’s associate vice president for Facilities Management.
Also, there will be a new accessible ramp and new stairs at the entrances on the east side of the building. Plus, there will be new accessible restrooms on all three floors, including a new all-gender restroom on each floor.
The work represents quite a change for a building that had its center portion constructed in 1892, with asymmetrical north and south wings added five years later. Elizabeth Hall was the first major building erected on campus by university benefactor and namesake John B. Stetson.
For students, this all means a much-anticipated alternative to climbing stairs.
Senior Skylar Endres, SGA’s director of Finance and a Political Science major, also works at Stetson’s Accessibility Services Center. From that perspective, the new elevator “makes Stetson more accessible to everyone.” And, on a personal level, she’s thrilled, commenting, “As a student, I really hate walking up three flights of stairs at 9 a.m. I’m excited to have the option of taking the elevator if I need it!”
First-year student Savannah Miranda, SGA’s director of Internal Operations, hasn’t been on campus long. Yet, the Political Science major is proud of the university for taking action. “It shows the faculty, the staff, everyone, they’re all listening to students’ concerns. Although I’ve only had one semester of concerns, it means that for students who are seniors, juniors and sophomores, that their concerns are being listened to and being acknowledged by the school — not a lot of schools do that with their students,” Miranda said.
Added sophomore Sara Hassler ’25, another Political Science major and SGA’s marketing director: “This is a huge milestone for the Stetson community and for any student or professor who has had to occupy a classroom on the third floor of Elizabeth. Being able to modernize a historic campus is something that makes Stetson ‘worth it.’”