State-of-the-Art Marion Anderson Hall Launching UCLA into the Future

Marion Anderson Hall

Last fall, UCLA Anderson School of Management broke ground on Marion Anderson Hall, a new state-of-the-art facility designed as a “blueprint for the future” of the school.

Developed in response to the dramatic expansion in programming, student body, and faculty that UCLA Anderson has experienced in the past 23 years, Marion Anderson Hall expands the existing cluster of five interconnected buildings that comprise the UCLA Anderson campus.

As the new primary entrance to the UCLA Anderson campus, the building will serve as both a symbolic and functional gateway to the school. Its design seeks to complement the school’s existing visual identity as it moves into the future, providing a space for students to “think in the next.”

A prototype image of the new Marion Anderson Hall / Photo via

The building’s design softens harder institutional edges with partial green roofs, access to daylight, and external walkways. It provides small clusters of seating and multi-function nooks and gathering spaces throughout, as well as team-based and active-learning workrooms to facilitate connection and collaboration. The building also exceeds LEED-certification guidelines.

At four stories and 64,000 square feet, Marion Anderson Hall significantly increases the Anderson campus reach. It will use UCLA’s signature four-color blended brick on the exterior and soften the lower roof line with areas of green roofing.

The building will contain acoustically optimized office and classroom spaces with adjustable window glazing. The upper levels will open to a central atrium, which will contain a double-height event space. The exterior will be open to Briskin Plaza on one side and approachable by car on the other.

The architects of the new Marion Anderson Hall are the award-winning PEI Cobb Fried and Partners, a firm known for its environmental sensitivity and its attention to the shaping of the public realm.

UCLA Anderson’s student body has expanded 64 percent since 1995 as it has grown from three degree programs to eight. It now offers a Ph.D., Executive MBA, master’s of financial engineering, master’s of science in business analytics, and two tracks of UCLA-NUS Executive MBA in partnership with the University of Singapore Business School. The new building will accommodate this expansion and provide opportunities for future growth.

The late Marion Anderson, the building’s namesake, is one of UCLA Anderson’s key donors. She and her husband, John Anderson (BS ’40), donated $100 million in May 2015, the largest gift UCLA has ever received. Much of her gift was dedicated to new fellowships and research, but a substantial $40 million was earmarked for the development and construction of a new state-of-the-art building.

As a long-time pillar of leadership and support for UCLA Anderson, Marion Anderson wanted to bring the school into the future. She served on the Board of Advisors and was active in learning about the needs and opportunities of the school. She often attended events and enjoyed getting to know faculty and students. She passed away on May 17, 2017. The building will serve as a reminder of her and her vast legacy of leadership and support.

Sam Tang (MBA ‘87) chose the loft as the area for his naming gift. He imagines the Tang Family Loft as a place to gather, connect, and think big-picture and elevated thoughts.

Marion Anderson Hall reinforces UCLA Anderson’s strategic plan for 2021, “One Anderson,” which involves strengthening connections within the Anderson community, as well as to the outside world. Other goals include increased relevance, more diversity and inclusion, and an elevated social mission.

You can learn more about Marion Anderson Hall here and take a look at the building below.

This article has been edited and republished with permissions from our sister site, Clear Admit.


About the Author

Jonathan Pfeffer

Jonathan Pfeffer joined the Clear Admit and MetroMBA teams in 2015 after spending several years as an arts/culture writer, editor, and radio producer. In addition to his role as contributing writer at MetroMBA and contributing editor at Clear Admit, he is co-founder and lead producer of the Clear Admit MBA Admissions Podcast. He holds a BA in Film/Video, Ethnomusicology, and Media Studies from Oberlin College.

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