Campus enrichments commence


Jennifer Byrd

Editor in chief

Banners around campus proclaim, “It’s a Whole New Ballgame”.  The graphics are indicative of the college’s sports teams, including the newly added soccer program, but this statement also refers to higher education collectively.

A decline in enrollment over the last three years, coupled with increased overhead costs and decreased funding are just a few of the challenges higher education faces.

“It’s a whole new day for Rose State; it’s a whole new day for all of higher education,” President Jeanie Webb said at the all staff breakfast earlier this month. “I believe the best days for Rose State are ahead and if I didn’t, I wouldn’t have taken this job.”

From left, Gary Hancock, general contractor, Don Reaves, maintenance employee, and Jacob Kuhn, maintenance employee, finish construction on the campus mall.

From left, Gary Hancock, general contractor, Don Reaves, maintenance employee, and Jacob Kuhn, maintenance employee, finish construction on the campus mall.

Part of the college’s response to the changing needs of post-secondary education is the Campus Advancement Plan, known asCAP.  Bids are still being submitted to the Board of Regents for consideration, but other non-CAP projects have already started.

Revitalization of the Campus Mall began last spring. Physical Plant employees worked through the summer, installing new benches, building the fountain, and cleaning up the butterfly garden.

“I have some of the best employees that a manager could ever ask for. They’ve been terrific,” Ardie Rodgers, physical plant director of operations, said.

 

Say goodbye to potholes
The board approved Connelly Paving Company of Oklahoma City on Aug. 22 to repave the parking lot.

A start date has not been set as of Aug. 28, but “the company will start moving in equipment the latter part of the first week in September,” Rodgers said.

Connelly will do the work in stages. In an interview, Webb said they hope this method of construction will decrease inconvenience as much as possible.

 

The plan for CAP

 

The board is expected to approve a Construction Management firm and several architects at the Sept. 19 board meeting.

“We are hiring an architect to do a Campus Master Plan,” Webb said. “The campus needs to come together and have a common theme and that is what this plan will do for us.” The architect will interview students, faculty, staff and the community for input on how to improve the campus.

The college also established a Planning Council comprised of faculty senate members, deans and vice presidents. The council will form a three-to-five-year plan, focusing on traditional students, adult students and online program marketing. “We want creative ideas on how we can improve the campus and make it the best. The strategic plan that the faculty and staff are working on will give us a road map,” Webb said.

 

LRC’s technological overhaul

 

The $7-million-dollar Learning Resource Center renovation is one of the largest CAP projects.

Webb visited Valencia College’s newly redesigned library in February and brought back ideas for a technologically driven building with more space for tutoring and testing.

Chris Meyer, Instructional Technology director, and LRC staff members also brainstormed renovation ideas.

“The building will be welcoming and needs to be a place where students and faculty want to hang out and study. It will be state-of-the-art too. We see a need for stronger Wi-Fi, increased electrical access for charging mobile devices, and flat panel informational displays,” Meyer said.

Webb said her goal is to have all CAP projects completed within two years. 

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