Milwaukee School of Engineering on Friday announced plans to build a $2.9 million softball stadium on its downtown Milwaukee campus for its NCAA Division III women’s softball team.
“Recruiting and retaining a diverse student population and enhancing the overall collegiate experience are key commitments in Milwaukee School of Engineering’s strategic plan, and the MSOE Raiders Softball Stadium is the university’s latest investment in these efforts,” stated school officials in a press release.
The project is being funded by a gift from Kathy Ruehlow, Matthew and Jodi Burow and Milwaukee-based Fiduciary Management Inc. Ruehlow and the Burows are MSOE alumni. Ruehlow and Matthew Burow are also MSOE regents.
The MSOE Raiders Softball Stadium is part of a larger project to expand the facilities for MSOE Athletics, provide greater opportunities for women athletes and expand co-curricular arts programming, the press release states.
The stadium will be built at the MSOE Athletic Field site northeast of Milwaukee and State streets. A ceremonial groundbreaking ceremony was held at the site on Friday afternoon.
MSOE Raiders Softball Stadium will replace the university’s existing softball field, which is in the heart of campus in downtown Milwaukee. Once complete, the stadium will provide the softball team with a state-of-the-art facility, comparable to the Kern Center, Viets Field and Raiders Baseball Stadium in Glendale. It will feature seating for 250 spectators, a natural grass field, dugouts for each team, a single-lane batting cage and bullpen on each side of the field, a building behind home plate featuring a press box, ticket window and concessions, and a combination of permanent and temporary “in season” fencing to keep the facility in top condition. The playing surface will span 227 feet from home plate to the center field fence, and 200 feet from home plate to the left and right field corners.
New offices for coaches and new women’s locker rooms are currently being built in the Kern Center and Viets Field as part of phase one of the project, which will allow the Raiders athletics program to add five new women’s teams: lacrosse, hockey, swimming, golf and bowling. It will also allow the school to expand its women’s track and field offerings.
“We are committed to offering our students opportunities and activities that support the development of their whole being, and that their collegiate experience goes beyond the classrooms and laboratories,” said Dr. John Walz, MSOE president. “We greatly appreciate the support of Regent Kathy Ruehlow, Regent Matthew Burow and his wife Jodi, and Fiduciary Management Inc. to help us increase opportunities for female athletes at MSOE.”
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