Heelan Hall is Briar Cliff's oldest and original building. It is now home to the majority of the University's academic departments and classrooms, though when it was first built, Heelan Hall housed everything from dorm rooms to the campus chapel and cafeteria.
The building is named after the Most Rev. Edmond Heelan, the former Bishop of Sioux City whose guidance and support were fundamental to the founding of Briar Cliff University. The building — and the college — were dedicated on Sept. 18, 1930, with Bishop Heelan leading the ceremony.
The University’s academic growth required expansion, and a fourth-story addition was built in 1948. The most recent renovations took place in 2012, with the addition of new classrooms, state-of-the art nursing and biology laboratories, central air conditioning and a 8,150-square foot atrium that has become a favorite stop for students between classes.