MSU Board of Regents members tour latest renovations

MSU TV Studio
MSU TV Studio

WICHITA FALLS, TX (KAUZ) - Midwestern State Board of Regents members wrapped up their first day of quarterly meetings Friday, and it all wasn't spent in a board room.

They got the chance to tour a couple facilities that are newly renovated. The Mass Communications building and Burns Chapel underwent a lot of work.

More than $4 million was poured into those facilities combined. Board of Regents members said renovations like these are what need to be done for the university to reach its goals.

"All of these help recruit students," Midwestern State President, Dr. Suzanne Shipley said. "Our goal is to grow 2,000 students by our 100th birthday in 2022, and this is how you do it."

The new look changes inside the Mass Communications building include things as small as new study areas.

"We were told over and over again to give them collaboration space," Chair of the Mass Communications Department, Dr. Jim Sernoe said. "They need space to work."

To as large as a new TV studio, newsroom, and control room. The Fain College of Fine Arts also has new practice and drawing rooms.

Dean of the College of Fine Arts, Dr. Martin Camacho, said the improvements were needed.

"I think that these renovations really put us at a place where we are among the most competitive college, he said. "Not only in the state of Texas but nationwide for a university of this size."

Dr. Shipley agrees. She believes the improvements could double the program in size.

"Right now we're at about 120 students," Dr. Shipley said. "Come back in two years and I bet we will be closer to 250."

Burns Chapel also underwent a complete makeover. Dr. Shipley said Midwestern State has to have the best facilities to prepare their students for the future and grow the university.

"One of our goals is to graduate high-earning graduates into high-earning professions," Dr. Shipley said. "So we really wanted to make sure they have hands-on ability to learn their profession well, so when they have to leave here they are competitive for jobs."

Next on their list is a new Health Sciences building, as well as renovations to Moffett Library. The total cost of those two projects is expected to be around $48 million, also state funded.

Dr. Shipley said the university is in a good place right now and is seeing student growth.

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