Paul Breitman, a Rutgers University dean for 18 years, became Princeton's first Frist Campus Center director in January.
Breitman served in several positions during his time at Rutgers, including his most recent role as the director of the three student centers there. He was previously a dean at East Carolina University, coordinating the events of the school's student center.
Members of the 13-person search committee said they chose Breitman from an original pool of 80 applicants.
"He has clearly demonstrated his ability as a seasoned professional," said Associate Dean of the Graduate School F. Joy Montero, who was on the committee. "We hope he can provide such guidance as he provided at the Rutgers campus center."
"I want to get out and meet people and be visible as a contributing member of the community," Breitman said in December. "I really see this as a tremendous, exciting opportunity. It's an opportunity to build and create and develop something at an institution the caliber of Princeton."
The campus center is scheduled to open in two phases, according to Breitman. Ten classrooms, a lecture hall and the offices of the Near Eastern and East Asian studies departments opened for the start of spring semester classes Jan. 31. The rest of the building should be open to be previewed in May and will officially open for the upcoming fall semester.
"I want the center to be viewed as a happening place," Breitman said. "When [students are] not in class, the library or lab, they should be saying, 'Hey, let's go to the campus center and see what's happening.' "
The center will be able to cater to a wide range of student interests because of the large number of functions it will perform, according to Assistant Dean of Undergraduate Students Thomas Dunne. He said some of the center's facilities include permanent office spaces, locker space and private meeting rooms for student organizations. While the campus center's dining options — ranging from pizza to sushi — might be seen as competing with the eating clubs, Dunne said he did not believe the campus center would act as a replacement for the social options on Prospect Avenue.