Wittenberg to spend $1M to upgrade several dorms, campus buildings

Wittenberg University will put up $1 million dollars to renovate several campus buildings beginning as soon as seniors graduate this Saturday.

Casey Gill, dean of students for Wittenberg, said the degree of improvements happening this summer hasn’t been done on campus in about 10 years.

“Students in 2019 want their facilities to look like what they have at home,” she said. “The types of things that we’re going to be doing in the summer are going to help students feel a sense of place and home here at Wittenberg.”

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A lot of those improvements are much-needed cosmetic spruces, like new paint, carpeting and updated, matching furniture.

Gill said the money is coming from a variety of sources including from the university’s student government association, private donations and Wittenberg’s capital funds.

“We’re excited that we’re able to pull them all together to really make a difference at one time,” she said.

The $1 million will stretch across at least seven campus buildings. Improvements will be made to three dorms, Firestine Hall, Ferncliff Hall and Tower Hall.

In Ferncliff, the bathrooms are being gutted nearly down to the bare bones and will be transformed with new sinks, lighting and shower resurfacing.

In addition to the dorms, work will also be done to Hollenbeck Hall, Recitation Hall, Matthies Honor House and the McClain Center for Diversity.

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In the Honors House, technology will be updated so students can actually have class out of the one the rooms.

“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.”

Several of the buildings on Wittenberg’s campus have been standing for decades, and some exterior repairs will also be needed, including brick work that’s finishing up on Recitation Hall, the campus’ second-oldest building.

“It’s always a balancing act trying to decide what can we do, should we do and what’s going to go the longest and furthest for our students,” she said.

Enhancements in select facilities will include new LED lighting. In addition, replacement of the sidewalk on Ward Street will be completed through Wittenberg’s partnership with the City of Springfield.

The work is expected to be completed by the end of the summer.

$1M — money spent for updates

7 — campus buildings that will see improvements

10 — years since facilities have had a significant facelift

The Springfield News-Sun is committed to covering stories including new developments and improvements at higher education institutions. Wittenberg University is expected to open a new $40M athletic facility, ‘The Steemer’ in the fall.

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