The campus map will be rearranged next academic year with the introduction of the Wellness Center and a merger of the Center for Careers and Employment and the Center for Careers and Transfer.
“We’re essentially restructuring and adding services that will better serve students,” said Dennis Kennedy, director of marketing and communications.
Gayle Healy, director of the Center for Careers and Employment, has been one of the coordinators of the project over the last three years. She said that the relationship between the Center for Counseling and Transfer is already closely aligned with the Center for Careers and Employment and that the consolidation would be more efficient for students who often schedule appointments for both offices.
“We frequently take students from students from [the CCE] and walk them over to the [CCT]. That’s two separate appointments. This cuts down on that. We can take care of their career and education goals in one appointment,” said Healy.
“Careers and Transfer have always been inextricably roomed together and now they will be delivered through one department for better customer service for our students,” said Kelly Sweener, director of the Center for Counseling and Transfer and the future director of the Wellness Center. The goal for the Wellness Center and the Center for Careers and Transfer is “one-stop shopping,” according to Sweener.
“Right now we have [The Center for] Counseling and Transfer — there really wasn’t a logical connection,” said Alexander Popovics, vice president for enrollment management and student development. Popovics developed the project, which was approved by President Drew Matonak in spring 2013.
“Even though it was approved back in the spring [of 2013], it hasn’t been rolled out because there have been delays with the construction and the spacing,” said Sweener.
“I think it was visionary that our vice president was thinking outside of the box by having the idea of bringing Health Services [to the Campus Center], which then offered us the opportunity to think creatively about how we can use our existing manpower, how we can be least disruptive and cost-efficient in bringing about a pretty significant change that made really great sense,” Sweener said of Popovics’ role in starting the project.
Popovics assigned Healy, Sweener, and Coordinator of Health Services Claudine Potvin-Giordano to further coordinate the project.
The new offices for the Center for Careers and Transfer will move to CTR 280 and 290, down the hallway from the former offices of Liberal Arts and Individual Studies advisement. The wall in between CTR 280 and 290 will be taken down as part of the project.
The Wellness Center, planned to open in fall 2015, incorporates Health Services, personal counseling and other wellness offerings such as stress management and tobacco cessation. “While we’re dealing with students’ physical health, we’re dealing with their mental health, and we’re dealing with ways to make you more well as a person. So we unified all of those common themes into one office,” Kennedy said.
“It would be a more comprehensive approach to providing care for students, and sometimes students are not sure as to what services are available and by us being here in Fitzgibbons [Health Technologies Center], we’re not necessarily as available as we could be,” said Potvin-Giordano.
According to Potvin-Giordano, the obscure location of Health Services has made it difficult for students to seek help. “Unless students have to drop off immunizations, they don’t know that we’re here,” she said. She said that relocating to the Campus Center will increase the visibility of the Wellness Center’s services.
The total projected cost of renovating the Wellness Center is $24,000, with $18,000 for plumbing.
The future space occupancy of the current Health Services offices in Fitzgibbons or the Individual Studies office in Brahan has not yet been determined.
Other offices are also undergoing changes with the project in place. Three Individual Studies advisement offices located in Brahan and the Campus Center are scheduled to be consolidated and relocated to the third floor of Fitzgibbons Hall after the Fitzgibbons renovations are completed this summer.
After the Science Center was completed in Fall 2013, additional lab and classroom space left open was envisioned to become the new site of the college’s new student orientation model.
The offices in on the third floor of Fitzgibbons will hold advisement for Liberal Arts and Individual Studies students as well as host new student orientation, which is currently held in the BTC.
“It’s just a constant evolution of wondering how we can provide better opportunities for students,” Kennedy said about the office relocations.