Grawn Hall, the oldest building on Central Michigan University’s campus, is undergoing some changes this semester.
Projects in Grawn, funded jointly by the university and the College of Business Administration, include updated restroom facilities, construction of seating spaces on all three floors, and the creation of a new entry space into the Institute for Entrepreneurship.
The CBA will pay $119,000 for the projects: $66,000 in renovations of six bathrooms, $33,000 for seating spaces and $20,000 for the new entry space. The university will pay $443,000 in deferred maintenance funding to replace aging domestic waterlines.
“CMU has systematically been replacing aging domestic waterlines on campus for the past several years,” CMU Director of Public Relations Steve Smith said. “To date, close to 25 buildings have had waterlines replaced.”
Charles Crespy, the dean of the College of Business Administration, said these changes will improve student access to Grawn’s technology-enabled project spaces, create more inviting study space near faculty offices and improve the overall aesthetics of the building.
“Our goal is to increase the engagement of our students with student organizations, faculty and with each other in study groups,” Crespy said.
Since construction is still underway, students and faculty must operate around the areas undergoing renovations. Second-level classrooms are still in use, but restrooms on the second and third levels are inoperable.
While the lack of facilities might be a hassle to some, some students are looking beyond that and focusing on the new classrooms.
“The renovations are very necessary, because Grawn is so old,” Auburn senior Alex Ruedger said. “It’s not really interfering with my classes, and I’m just happy that money was used on something that could really use an update.”
Renovation is nothing new to Grawn Hall. Last year, upgrades were completed in the Isabella Bank Institute for Entrepreneurship. Eight project rooms, a large telecommunication-enabled classroom, a marble lobby, an executive conference room and the Pranger Recognition Hallway were upgraded.
These renovations were funded by private donations and cost $965,000, according to Crespy.
“I am excited about making Grawn more student-friendly and more technology-enabled,” Crespy said. “Enhancing the aesthetics and functionality of Grawn will only improve student performance and create a more vibrant and exciting School of Business.”