A Fresh FaceAug 26th, 2009 | By admin | Category: Highlights
Renovation Projects at Wesley Feature New Furniture and Equipment for Buildings
By Mark Gregorio
The end of a school year on a college or university campus usually signals the start of many construction projects. At Wesley College, a new renovation season began just as the spring semester came to a close. Several campus buildings underwent facelifts this summer, with major improvements to several classrooms and residence halls.
When students return to the College in the fall, one change they will notice is a freshly painted building with brand new furniture. Williams Hall, a 23,000 square-foot residence hall for first and second-year students, will have two of everything in each room: extra long beds, wardrobe units, desks and dressers. According to Kevin Hansbury, director of residence life at Wesley, the renovation project was an important investment to allow the College to meet the needs of its students. “I think the furniture looks great and it enhances the feel of the residence hall,” he said.
In the H.B. du Pont College Center, student lounges were upgraded with new sofas, tables and chairs. Mary-Alice Ozechoski , dean of students, stated that the renovations to the 96,000 square-foot College Center originated from student feedback, indicating the need for more leisure space on campus. “Students were requesting more comfortable areas so that they could hang out longer in the College Center after classes and during the evenings,” she said.
The projects in Williams Hall and the College Center came with a price tag of $250,000. The College purchased the furniture from Butler Woodcrafters, a company based out of Richmond, Virginia that specializes in providing quality contract furniture to schools and universities. In addition, Wesley’s bookstore, operated by Barnes and Noble, recently received an estimated $45,000 make-over.
Responding to the need for more science equipment and better lab space, the College recently completed restoration on an existing organic chemistry laboratory. Built in the 1960s, the science lab located in Cannon Hall needed extensive remodeling according to College officials. The project included new mechanical, electrical, gas and plumbing systems as well as new flooring, wall finishes, a barrier-free safety station, chemical fume hoods, storage cabinets and nine student workstations, one of which was made to be handicap-accessible. Dr. Malcolm J. D’Souza, a Wesley chemistry professor, said the upgrades will increase the number of students who wish to participate in undergraduate research. Funding for the project was obtained through an IDeA grant from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and administered through the Delaware Biotechnology Institute to help further undergraduate chemistry research on Wesley’s campus. W