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Buildings @ Oakland University

Lowry Early Childhood Center

Built: 1972 | Type: administrative and auxiliary

Quick Facts

  • Program onset: 1972
  • Center Dedication: June 7, 1975
  • Construction: Before its installation in Pawley Hall in 2002, Lowry initially operated out of renovated poultry barns that were once part of Meadow Brook Estate.
  • Funding: University-allocated child registration and enrollment funds.  Lowry was recommended by the OU Senate and President O'Dowd in 1970 to operate on a self-sustained basis.
  • Specifications: 5,000 sq. ft.; features 6 classrooms, indoor recreation room, and a playground. Accommodates up to 138 children.
  • Namesake: Matthew R. Lowry, former teacher/co-director of Oakland University's Toddler Center. Lowry passed away in 1974 due to injuries sustained during an automotive accident.


In service to students, faculty, and surrounding community members, Lowry Early Childhood Center began as a child care center in the 1960s, located at the corner of Adams and Butler in one of the buildings that used to be part of the poultry group on Meadow Brook Farms.

In 1975, the child care and toddler centers were consolidated with the new infant observation laboratory into a new early childhood education center, named after Matthew R. Lowry. Lowry was an Oakland University alumnus and a former director of the toddler center, who died in 1974 in a car accident.

Since 2002 Lowry has been located on the second floor of Pawley Hall, Oakland University's Education and Human Services Building; access is given to a large play- and activities room as well as an outdoor playground to the east of the building. Children from ages 15 months to five years are welcomed into either the Lowry's Infant or Toddler program, where they are engaged in activities designed to teach and nurture their growing personalities and interests.

Lowry was awarded status as an accredited child education center from the National Association for the Education and Young Children (NAEYC) in 2012, becoming one of approximately 7,000 early childhood programs nationwide to achieve such status.


For more information

Oakland University SEHS - Lowry Center.

Oakland University Annual Report for 1974-1975, p. 4

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Photos courtesy of the Oakland University Archives.



Created by Mariela Hristova / Updated on May 15, 2018 by Mariela Hristova

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