FREDONIA – Major construction and renovation projects are continuing on the campus of Fredonia State College, members of the College Council heard at their regular meeting Wednesday.
The $60 million Science Center is projected to be opened in spring 2014. The new building is adjacent to Houghton Hall on campus. Mechanical, electrical and plumbing work is currently ongoing at the site. Some of the roadways nearby have been closed during construction and are expected to be closed through the summer.
The Williams Center saw many renovations that totaled $13 million over the past few years. Work on both floors in the center has been completed. A new patio was also installed. This year the graduating class raised $17,000 and donated the money for the construction of a gazebo near the patio at the center. According to David M. Tiffany, of university advancement, it was the largest gift ever given by a class that had not yet graduated. A picnic for the seniors will be held today.
Council members received word that a $36 million redesign to the Rockefeller Arts Center has not been cut from the state budget. Plans are to add a 53,715-square-foot addition to the center and improve the dance studios, photography labs, computer labs and rehearsal rooms. The college hopes to be able to seek bids for the construction work in November.
Graduation is at the campus is this weekend, while the admissions office is busy securing freshman and transfer students for next fall. The school hopes to exceed its freshman enrollment target and plans to enroll 1.100 new students.
David Herman said the Admissions Office has found enrollment and recruitment difficult this year as private colleges are offering competitive grants and scholarships to lure students. He said the office is also finding an increase in the number of students who stay close to home to avoid the cost of living on campus.
The Admissions Office evaluated about 7,000 applications for the fall semester. There will be an increase of $150 each semester for tuition. Other charges are also projected to increase, including student fees and the comprehensive fee for all students at $21 per semester.
The 2013-14 operating budget for the university is $49,669,600. That is an increase of 3.71 percent over the current budget. The college expects to add two new positions and will fill some positions that have been vacant more than six months.
Students at Fredonia State College recently participated in a communitywide electronics recycling program. They collected about 70,000 pounds of electronic equipment. In addition, the school was ranked first among all SUNY colleges in New York for recycling efforts.