Departments relocate with student needs paramount


Photo by Megan McLoughlin.

This semester marks the first year that major offices on campus inhabit new locations after several moves this past year. Various offices on campus were relocated to make space for the admissions office move to the east wing of Northrup Hall’s first floor, and have since settled into their new spaces.

“Part of the design incorporates a sort of one-stop-shopping approach for students,” said university registrar Alfred Rodriguez. “Admissions, financial aid, and the registrar offices are all strategically located in a central place on campus.”

The move was decided on by a committee that considered several proposals involving the idea of creating a more centrally located place to attend to the needs of prospective and current students. Among the ideas considered were a welcome center, which has been put on hold for the time being, and the move that eventually took place. Because there were already other offices located in the space admissions now inhabits, there were several decisions to make regarding where offices would be relocated on campus. The move took place predominantly over the summer, and at times involved renovation of the new spaces to better suit the needs of those offices.

“Everyone on our staff was in awe of how John Greene handled the move and renovation. He and his department were absolutely critical in making the transition so smooth and quick,” Rodriguez said.

The admissions office has observed a greatly improved response from visiting families and prospective students after the move, with the new movement to Northrup allowing these visitors to experience the energy on campus and interact with students and professors in the hall. Additionally, the office that admissions is now housed in allows for more visiting between touring families, current student and staff, which makes for a more welcoming atmosphere.

Admissions intends to use major visiting days next semester to encourage staff and students to come and speak with visitors about their experiences at the university. This informal meeting style will be especially beneficial for prospective students, so that they are able to see what current students think of attending the university. These major visit days will most likely fall on Mondays and Fridays, and this program will be instituted next semester.

“Our staff really appreciates the cooperation of the other offices in this move,” said director of domestic recruitment Justin Doty. “It’s a different atmosphere here, and it really seems to be making a huge difference for our visitors, who feel more connected [and] less removed from the heart of campus.”

Additionally, associate vice president for student affairs and dean of students David Tuttle was relocated to the Coates University Center, allowing him a more accessible location to students. His intention for the future is to set out a sign near Einstein’s inviting students to visit him during his direct-access office hours, and to get a dog that students will be able to interact and de-stress with, much like Jurgens during the 2011 and 2012 years.

“This all was really a result of the initiative by the administration to bring admissions to a more central location, so it was all a domino thing with the greater good in mind,” Tuttle said. “I think the changes have worked out really well.”