Renovations to the facility have taken place during the three-week winter break that ends on Jan. 9, when students return to campus for the start of the second semester of the 2005-06 school year. The third and final phase of the renovation project to the dining areas of the Benham-Pence Student Center incorporates a facelift for the seating area of the CDR, including new carpet, paint and tiles arranged with the recognizable gothic “W” in the entry way. In addition, acoustic panels designed to reduce noise bounce-back are being placed on the ceiling of the room.
During Spring Break in March, the project will conclude as new tables and chairs will be brought into the CDR.
The renovation is part of a cutting-edge, three-phase transformation of the student center dining areas, which began last year. In January 2005, the first phase was complete with the unveiling of Post 95, a café-style eatery formerly known as the Commons, located on the first floor of the student center.
Last August, a two-month, $400,000 renovation was completed with the grand re-opening of the CDR. A new layout and design of the food service area, complete with a modern color scheme, a new menu and wider variety of eating options was warmly received from students, faculty and staff. The CDR also extended its hours of operations from 7 a.m.-8 p.m., providing more convenience for students with busy schedules.
While the first two phases of the student center’s renovation have concentrated as much on upgrading the menus and food options, the third phase focused exclusively on aesthetic improvements.
“Like the other two phases, this updates the space, making it upscale, warm and welcoming,” said Donna Picklesimer, director of business services. She hopes the final phase will help to create “an inviting space that makes students want to come and, perhaps, linger.”
Design aspects of the CDR renovations are managed by Dennis Karbach, project manager for Sodexho’s Campus Services division, in consultation with Chris Gray, regional executive chef with Sodexho, and Tom Glover, dining services executive chef/production manager. The architect is Karen Beasley from Bellefontaine, Ohio, and the contractor is Bellefontaine-based Thomas & Marker, coordinated by Karl McCartney. Millwork will be performed by Mid-Atlantic Finishes of Allentown, Pa.
A Wittenberg committee that includes Dawn Henseler White, director of the student center, Mark DeVilbiss, director of student activities, Dave Nease, crafts superintendent, Donna Picklesimer, director of business services, and Jonathan Scruggs, Wittenberg class of 2006 and president of Student Senate, has been overseeing all of the renovations.
- Sarah Gearhart '06
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