McCormick Makes Big Changes

Jonas Aultz and Olivia Horman

Renovations planned for the McCormick building are set to displace the faculty and staff as early as late May 2022. Students have been left with conflicted thoughts on the total benefit of the renovations.

Some students have expressed the concern that the displacement of their major’s department, is not worth the benefits of a renovated building. Meanwhile, other students believe that a new building will create a better learning environment.

Saige Fenton, a sophomore psychology major from Berwick stated, “I believe honestly it is more of an inconvenience to campus than it helps. It is more beneficial for them to do small projects over breaks so we can have an extensive amount of space that comes with McCormick.”

Emil Mikle, the assistant director of facilities for planning and construction, stated that it is planned for construction to take no more than two years to complete. The current expected date for the project to finish is October 2025.

Junior Nick Feudale of Shamokin who is currently enrolled as a media and journalism student said, “I think it’s great that they’re upgrading the space so that students will have better places and better tools to learn.”

The McCormick building houses many departments including the nursing, media, and journalism, and parts of the education departments.

Junior Jessica Deeter says, “I’m a nursing student and it will be an odd adjustment going from a building we know so well, to ones we don’t know at all.”

A major concern students seem to have is the noise that will be occurring during the renovation since Waller Administration is located right next to McCormick. Deeter says “I’m definitely worried about the noise level. I can’t focus very well in classrooms if there is a lot of loud outside noise.”

During the renovations, the department of nursing will be temporarily housed in the Old Science Building, located on the residential side of campus. This will include the simulated labs and the department offices.

The media and journalism department will be located in the Waller building with the major studios getting moved across the quad to Centennial Hall. The radio station will be temporarily housed in Waller as well as the Instructional Media Services loan desk.

All other departments, including education, will be spread across campus with mostly all of the professor offices being placed in Waller. Final planning for all departments has not yet been completed but is near the final stages of completion.

In the long run, all departments housed in McCormick will see significant improvements in their respective areas.

The director of simulated labs for the department of nursing, Gail Jasman, outlined multiple improvements that nursing majors can expect to see following the completion of the renovations. Among the improvements are high fidelity simulated rooms and a pair of modified artificial intelligence patients.

A professor who would like to remain anonymous says, “I would like the think the transition will be easy, but I don’t think it will. Bloomsburg has a variety of students at different grade levels. A lot of older students who were here pre-pandemic and this past school year may have difficulties with the change and being in buildings they’ve never encountered before. Although, I think the transition will be challenging I am ready to help my students.”

Another major concern students seem the have is parking. One of the largest faculty parking lots on campus in located behind McCormick and with constant construction going on students are worried parking will become even less available to them.

As per department head Jason Genovese, the department of media and journalism will also be receiving upgrades to their learning facilities as they will be gaining a new state-of-the-art television studio. Along with this, they will see an increase in classroom space in the form of a second editing lab equipped with Macintosh computers.

Throughout the duration of the project, Mikle and his team have worked in close collaboration with the departments in the building to ensure that everything is built to best serve the needs of the students.

According to Mikle, Bloomsburg university is in the final stages of preparation. All that remains is for the university to accept a bid offer made by one of the contractor groups. Once this matter has been settled construction deadlines will become more definite.