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‘Upward Bound’ sculpture unveiled

‘Upward Bound’ sculpture unveiled
  • On November 27, 2019

By Shauna Stocken
Editor in Chief

LCC hosted the official unveiling of its newest sculpture, “Upward Bound,” Nov. 22 on the main campus, followed by a ribbon-cutting, reception and dedication.

The sculpture, located on the hill in the center of campus, reaches 43 feet high and sets on a uniquely engineered 50-ton base.

“The outward-facing surfaces are a solid color and then the inner-ward facing ones have more of a fade, a gradient to it,” said Matthew J. McGaughey of the Mayotte Group Architects, the firm behind the design of “Upward Bound.”

McGaughey said the literal interpretation of the sculpture brings one’s eyes upwards as they view the piece. He said it is symbolic of students academically moving through the college and progressing forward.

The idea to build such a substantial art sculpture on campus was inspired by LCC President Dr. Brent Knight, who is retiring from the college next summer.

It’ll take some time for people to understand it, but it’s a big deal,” Knight said. “It’s one of the largest sculptures in Michigan.”

“We designed and made it so it would last a very long time,” he continued. “It’s galvanized and there’s a special anti-rust primer and it’s got multiple coats … of clear paint on top of that.”

According to Knight, “Upward Bound” was engineered to withstand heavy winds and inclement weather for at least 50 years.

The dedication piece, a donation from LCC Trustee Andrew Abood, helped turned the sculpture into reality, according to McGaughey. 

“He (Abood) chose to dedicate it to his mother, and so that didn’t necessarily play into the form of the structure, but it being a grand element on campus makes it a grand gesture,” McGaughey said.

In honor of Abood’s mother, Patricia Abood, 88, approximately 30 members of the Abood family joined LCC and the Lansing community in the unveiling. 

“It was nice to see what Glen Granger had done for his family and the clock tower on campus,” Abood said. “I met with President Knight a few times, and he had brought (the ‘Upward Bound’ project) up, and I eventually thought that this is something I could do. “When I thought about doing it and made that connection, there was a no more worthy person than my mom.”

According to Abood, the sculpture drawing tourists to LCC is a secondary factor.

“The primary effect is to inspire the people, the staff, the Lansing community, the students and the faculty here at LCC,” Abood said.

In Knight’s reception speech, he encouraged students and the community to visit “Upward Bound,” to photograph it, to meet each other near it and to take selfies underneath it.

Guests are also encouraged to visit “Upward Bound” after dark and view the sculpture when it is lit.

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