The administration and student leaders have picked a designer, and the stage has been set, so to speak, to begin renovations in the Gardner Student Center.
Joanie Ayers of Arrange Interior has been chosen to update the Gardner to a more modern atmosphere. She and administration are shooting for a May 19 completion date for the renovations, which include an Internet café and a stage to accommodate small performances.
Jordon Sharp, director of student involvement and leadership, said the new look will include paint and lighting, and it will also incorporate student art.
“We’d like to have a place where every year we showcase an art piece that one of the students has done,” he said.
The renovation is just in planning stages, though. Ayers has created a rough sketch of what she plans on doing in the center, and Sharp said the plans are subject to change as the planning process continues.
“We were kind of dragging our feet because we’re going to be redoing this whole building,” Sharp said. “But it’s too far out. We’re not doing any huge construction. The rest is just paint and carpet and some lighting. It’s not going to be enormous, but it will do a lot of good.”
Dean of Students Del Beatty said Ayers’ proposed design is perfect for students.
“There’s a lot of things we really, really like about [her designs],” Beatty said. “It’s very modern, it’s very urban-feeling, it’s very New York loft.”
Beatty said the design may not be cohesive with the rest of the campus, but it’s very appropriate for a student center.
“The students really need to have the biggest say (in the process) because they’re the one’s paying for it,” Beatty said.
He said the renovations will move forward pretty quickly now that the designer has been chosen.
“We want to start right away,” Beatty said.