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Edgewood campus community enhanced by residence hall addition, Cutting Edge

On a beautiful afternoon in Madison this past spring, Edgewood College marked the official start of construction on a significant addition to Regina residence hall with a ceremonial groundbreaking.  The $13 million project will provide additional living space for more than 100 students and is scheduled to be completed in time for the fall 2016 semester. The new hall extends the north end of Regina Hall, and also brings major improvements to the existing rooms and shared living spaces. 
These are welcome improvements for the expanding campus and are all the more meaningful because of the inspiration behind the gift that made the project possible. Ms. Catherine Zdeblick, a major benefactor to the project, made her gift in honor of the memory of her son, AJ. AJ Zdeblick was a student in the first cohort of Edgewood’s Cutting Edge program in 2007.  Cutting Edge is the only program in Wisconsin and one of about 40 programs nationwide that offers a fully integrated higher education experience for adult learners with intellectual challenges and other developmental disabilities such as Down syndrome, autism spectrum, traumatic brain injuries, and cerebral palsy. AJ’s sudden passing more than five years ago deeply affected his family, friends, and his college.
Catherine Zdeblick’s gift ensures that three students in the College’s Cutting Edge program will be able to live in the new hall each year. Her moving remarks during the groundbreaking ceremony reminded the audience of the power of education in every individual’s life. “AJ’s life changed when he came to Edgewood College,” Zdeblick said. “…He blossomed in his independence because he felt valued and respected. He had faith he could meet the challenge, and he ran with it.”
 “When you change a child you change the family,” she continued. “When you change the family you change the community. When you change a community you can change the world.”