While students enjoy summer break, Wittenberg will continue in its efforts to enhance its student-centered, living-learning environment by investing more than $1 million to renovate and upgrade several facilities on campus.
Buildings scheduled to be updated this summer include residence facilities Ferncliff Hall and Firestine Hall; Hollenbeck Hall, Wittenberg’s humanities home; Recitation Hall, home of the Office of Admission, among other administrative offices; the McClain Center for Diversity, and the Matthies House, home of the University’s Honors Program.
Much of the work is expected to begin on May 13 and should be completed by July 29 – well ahead of when all students return to campus for the start of the 2019-2020 academic year on August 19. Several updates have already been completed or are nearing completion, including the natatorium being resurfaced in the Health, Wellness and Athletics (HWA) Complex, the basement of Tower Hall receiving new paint, flooring, and comfortable lounge furniture, and the front entrance to Recitation Hall, Wittenberg’s second-oldest building, undergoing brick repair and tuck pointing earlier this spring.
“We are excited about what has been accomplished so far and by the upcoming renovations and enhancements that will continue this summer,” said Casey Gill, vice president and dean of students. “Wittenberg is investing in a variety of projects aimed at creating an improved living and learning environment for our students. Our efforts also aim to make individual living spaces, along with common areas, more attractive spaces for students to take pride in calling home.”
Ferncliff Hall, located in the southwest corner of campus next to Commencement Hollow, and Firestine Hall, located in the center of campus and close to the HWA Complex, will both receive new flooring, new paint in all common areas, new furnishings, energy-efficient lighting throughout, remodeled bathrooms and safety enhancements.
“New carpeting, fresh paint and new furniture are necessary components in improving our student living spaces, and the residents of these facilities will immediately experience the positive effects of these changes this fall,” Gill added. “This is an exciting time for Wittenberg.”
Repairs to Hollenbeck Hall will mainly be exterior updates, and the Matthies House will enjoy new paint, carpet, furniture, enhanced audio-visual technology, lighting, and exterior upgrades, including new paint, gutters, facia, and soffits.
"The leadership and student members of the University Honors Program are thrilled with the investment being made in our beloved Matthies Honors House,” said Molly Wood, professor of history, and Robert Sammis Sr. Director of the University Honors Program. “These improvements will greatly enhance the honors experience on campus.”
The McClain Center for Diversity is also slated to receive new carpet, fresh paint, technology upgrades, and furniture.
“The McClain Center for Diversity is undergoing a renovation/update this summer to alter the overall look and feel of the center,” said Joshua Moore, assistant dean for diversity and inclusion. “I have consulted with the students who currently utilize the center for feedback. The updates being made will bring the center up-to-date with technology and feel. The goal is to create a space that resembles home and gives the students a space to gather. The changes being made are to achieve that goal and to increase the utilization of the McClain Center.”
Additional enhancements in select facilities will include new LED lighting consistent with Wittenberg’s commitment to sustainability. In addition, replacement of the sidewalk on Ward Street will be completed through Wittenberg’s strong partnership with the City of Springfield.