CMU Board Plans Campus Improvements
Campus improvements and institutional growth, both near term and farther down the road, were the focus of much of the Central Methodist University Board of Trustees' quarterly meeting this past week.
Board members approved an approximately $1.5 million series of improvements to CMU residence hall facilities, primarily Howard-Payne and Holt Halls, according to CMU President Marianne E. Inman. The Board met Friday and Saturday (Feb. 17-18) in Fayette.
About $800,000 is for improvements in Howard-Payne, with another $630,000 for Holt, Inman noted. Work will start this summer, continue through next year, and wrap up in the summer of 2013, she said.
Exciting though those short-term improvements may be, Trustees along with CMU senior administrative staff spent even more time and energy looking ahead at CMU facilities, with an eye toward continued growth and efficiency.
What they saw was a set of opportunities that, while substantial in scope and cost, will position Central Methodist well for decades to come, President Inman pointed out. These proposed changes will continue to be studied by the Board and administration, she said.
Much of the opening session of the Board meeting was spent hearing a campus master plan presentation by Tom Celli of the Pittsburgh, Penn. firm Celli-Flynn Brennan Architects and Planners. Celli and CFB have worked with CMU for a number of years.
Celli provided a series of recommendations for campus enhancements. Some involved major structural renovations, others were smaller and more cosmetic in nature, and all were guided by principles including quality instructional facilities, efficient use of space, better access and pedestrian traffic flow, adaptability to technological change, and campus beautification.
Among the more prominent projects Celli addressed were major improvements to Stedman Hall, CMU's primary science and health sciences facility; to T. Berry Smith Hall, which houses many CMU instructional programs; to Clingenpeel Hall, a former gymnasium that could become student fitness and recreation space; and a variety of enhancements to CMU residence halls.
Board members also heard of plans to relocate and consolidate functions within CMU's Center for Learning and Teaching in Cupples Hall. Those changes will be made possible when the Ashby-Hodge Gallery of American Art relocates from Cupples to Classic Hall upon Classic's renovation.
A new Welcome Center and Admissions Office area, relocated soccer field, parking and sidewalk upgrades, and using fill dirt to bring a portion of the campus quadrangular up to grade for better utilization and aesthetics, were among the many other suggestions the Board discussed with Celli and CMU leadership.
Board members listened to a State of the University presentation from President Inman. Her report highlighted continued strong growth in CMU's College of Graduate and Extended Studies (CGES), positive results from CMU's annual financial audit, and cash received from various fundraising initiatives that were double those of the prior year.
She noted some of the challenges facing CMU and other institutions, including the threat of reductions in student financial aid, a projected decline in the number of Missouri high school graduates over the next several years, general economic uncertainty, and increasing state, federal and accrediting agency regulations.
Board members elected CMU alumnus Robert L. (Bob) Hahne, Class of 1960, as its newest Trustee. A resident of Falls Church, Va., Hahne is a retired principal with the Deloitte accounting firm in Washington, D.C., has served on the CMU alumni board, and is currently a member of CMU's President's Council. He will join the CMU governing board at its April meeting.
Other highlights of the meeting included a tour of the Classic Hall renovation project and a chance to attend the CMU Opera Workshop.
Founded in 1854, Central Methodist programs range from undergraduate and graduate studies to high-school dual credit offerings. Serving more than 5,000 students on its historic main campus in Fayette, through collaborative programs at locations across Missouri, and online, the CMU mission emphasizes academic and professional excellence, ethical leadership, and social responsibility.
|There are no related articles.|