It was a landmark day on March 10th at West Virginia University Parkersburg, celebrating the opening of the Student Services Center. A ribbon cutting ceremony took place and wasattended by students and facility members.
Having student services offices at different locations was a confusing and tiresome journey according, saying it should be a painless experience in getting the help that they need.
Wanting to fix this issue, Student Services Vice President Anthony Underwood approached WVU Parkersburg President Dr. Fletcher Lamkin this time last year, with an idea to consolidate the student service into one central location.
This location includes counseling, records, financial aid, testing, and other general student support. According to Lamkin, the center is a statement that the college cares about its students.
“This center is not only going to save students time, but it will also send a strong message that we care about you and we want you to succeed,” Lamkin said.
Along with Lamkin, Dave White Director of Facilities and Cindy Lamkin worked together with Underwood’s idea, coming up with the design and a $480,000 budget that was approved by the Board of Governors last October.
Soon after getting approved, while working with Pickering Associates, the project was a huge success. The project come in under budget, only costing the school $465,000 and was ahead of schedule, much to the delight of Lamkin.
“As of result of a great plan executed perfectly and efficiently, I mean how many projects end under budget and ahead of time? That’s something to be proud of,” Lamkin said.
Going through what currents students went though, Chairman of the Board of Governors Jeffrey Matheny understood the need of the positives the center brings to WVU Parkersburg.
“The Board of Governors fully supports this center. We wanted to make sure our students are able to find a place to get their questions answered and quickly move the process so they can accomplish their degree and lifetime goals,” Matheny said.
During most of Student Government Association (SGA) meetings. A majority of student’s issues involved having to go back and forth multiple times for help.
SGA president Bill Bell is proud that the center was passed by the Board and thinks this is the best idea that has happened to WVU Parkersburg in quite some time.
“I’m really impressed by this center, I think it is going to answer a lot of students concerns, I think it’s going to help student’s morale and I’m really proud of what this institution has done. Mr. Underwood, thank you for listing to us,” Bell said.
Once the ribbon was cut, Underwood gave people in attendance tours of the new center and where offices are located at, while others outside enjoyed cake and punch.
WVU Parkersburg is in the process of moving everything in the center and the center will be fully operational by April 1st.
“I want to thank the Board of Governors for providing us the support we needed to make this a reality. So congratulations and well done to all, thank you,” Lamkin said.
by Tyler Bennett
Photos courtesy of Liv Hefner Photography