By John C. McClanahan & Jubenal Aguilar
Copy Editor/Editoral Proofreader &
Construction crews began to dig, drill, scrape and cut through walls and cement foundations in different areas of Brookhaven College early in December 2017. The construction projects are part of a major remodeling of areas of the campus including A, S and M buildings. These projects are part of Brookhaven’s Project RISE, a $2.625 million Title V grant the college received from the Department of Education in 2015.
The grant is funded under the Developing Hispanic-Serving Institutions Program (84.031S), commonly known as Title V, according to ed.gov.
In an email to The Courier, Ngoc Truong, instructional designer and Title V director, said the construction projects include renovation of spaces to accommodate the new Academic Engagement and Support Center, or AESC, and the Business and Industry, Mentoring and Transfer Center, currently located in the Career Development Center.
S BUILDING SERVICES
Truong said the AESC will provide centralized services. She said the new center will benefit students by providing centralized tutoring space scattered throughout the campus. “The center will promote student engagement, particularly for those students who are less likely or able to seek out the current tutoring labs and spaces,” Truong said.
Some of the services will include tutoring, learning support and computer access, student collaboration spaces and financial planning resources, as well as assistance with Pell and state grants, scholarships and financial aid.
Family advocacy, referral services for non-academic financial needs, such as child care, housing assistance, and counseling and social services will also be available to students in the AESC, Truong said.
“The number one goal in the college’s strategic plan is to maximize student success for all,” Truong said. “It also supports the district’s network approach and Guided Pathways, which is a clear, concise map that helps students earn a credential in the least amount of time.”
In a Dec. 18, 2017, campuswide email, Meridith Danforth, marketing and creative services director, said a glass curtain would be installed on the second floor of S Building above admissions, the cashier and business offices. “Having the wall in place will mean there is improved safety for the work that is happening on the new tutoring and student center on the second floor when it continues over the new year,” she said.
The Business and Industry, Mentoring and Transfer Center will provide information and linkages for mentorships, internships and experiential learning, university transfer advising and job interviews and placement, Truong said.
The Marketing and Creative Services Office will relocate from its current location in Room S241 to A Building. Danforth said the marketing office’s move will pave the way for the AESC to be built in S Building.
In an email to The Courier, Danforth said, “I am excited to get into a new space that will offer us some different spaces such as a studio for photos and video.” While she has enjoyed being located in the Student Services Center because it helps her team be in the know of what happens around Brookhaven, Danforth said the move will expose them to different conversations to see the big picture opportunities to tell about the college.
NEW ADMIN OFFICES
Reconfiguration of rooms A201 and A203 began late in Fall 2017 semester to allow for additional office spaces and the marking office relocation, Danforth said. Conference space is currently being relocated to the north side of A Building, next to U Building.
The entrance near U Building is closed off due to construction.
Parking lot P3, located in front of S Building, now has new installments geared toward student, staff and faculty safety. Construction on the P3 lot began Dec. 11, 2017, when the back half of the parking lot was closed off. Part of the lot remained closed into Spring 2018 when construction and landscaping was completed.
“The project added raised islands and a central aisle for pedestrians,” Danforth, said.
The islands were added throughout the lot at the ends of each row and along the center at the crosswalks, Danforth said. The islands are meant to help guide traffic through rows and protect pedestrians.