Mulvane Hall renovations to be finished by fall

Construction on Mulvane Hall will continue throughout the summer so the building will be fully-renovated and ready for use at the beginning of the fall semester. Plans for the new science building began about 12 years ago. Although construction workers encountered a problem with the floor plans, the building is still scheduled to be completed on time. During the summer, Lyn Lakin, executive vice president for administrative services and chief operating officer, will wrap up fundraising efforts for the renovation project.

Construction on Mulvane Hall will continue throughout the summer so the building will be fully-renovated and ready for use at the beginning of the fall semester. Plans for the new science building began about 12 years ago. Although construction workers encountered a problem with the floor plans, the building is still scheduled to be completed on time. During the summer, Lyn Lakin, executive vice president for administrative services and chief operating officer, will wrap up fundraising efforts for the renovation project. Photo by Pat Howell.

The Baker University students, faculty and staff can expect to see a fully-renovated Mulvane Hall at the beginning of the fall semester.

“I can hardly wait for the students to come back in August and walk into this building,” Professor of Biology Darcy Russell said.

Russell began plans for a new science building about 12 years ago and will finally see the completion of the project in just a few months.

“We’ve had really nice weather so the addition to the building is on schedule, but the renovated area has had a few glitches,” Russell said.

While Russell now has her own hardhat for every time she needs to enter the building, the rest of the faculty and staff were allowed to tour the inside last week.

“Some were concerned about some of the changes we’d made, but most were just tickled pink,” Russell said.

Construction workers encountered a problem when the architectural floor plans from the 1920s, when the building was first built, were not accurate.

“It ended up (being that) the floor we were going to put in was too heavy. So, we had to bring the engineers back in and rethink the whole floor situation,” Russell said. “But when you come up against a block, you make the changes and just go through with it.”

While Russell spearheads the renovation plans, Lyn Lakin, executive vice president for administrative services and chief operating officer, will spend the summer wrapping up the fundraising efforts for Mulvane Hall.

“We are very excited about the continuing support from our alumni and we are closing in on the goal,” Lakin said.

In addition to the funds needed to cover the cost of the renovations, Lakin is also looking to build an endowment that can be used to purchase new equipment and technology needed in the next few years.

All the names of people that have donated money to the project will be honored with a donor recognition wall on the second floor of the new building.

“It’s actually something that is almost an expectation,” Lakin said. “Anytime you do a big project like this, you recognize the donors that made it possible.”

Sophomore chemistry major Megan Rosa said she is excited to see the finished product.

“It seems like the project is going well so far, and I hope the other science students are excited for next year, too,” Rosa said.

While the renovations have been an inconvenience to science classes this semester, Russell knows the end result will be worth the trouble.

“You have to think about long-term bliss when you’re in the middle of short-term chaos,” Russell said.

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