During a weekend already bursting with activity, William Woods University will dedicate two new apartment-style residential facilities that opened this fall.
The dedication is scheduled for 1:30 p.m. Friday (Oct. 14) at the site of Stone-Campbell Memorial Hall, on the southeast corner of W. 12th and Ewing streets. A ribbon cutting by the Kingdom of Callaway Chamber of Commerce Ambassadors and tours of the apartments will follow.
A large crowd is expected since parents will be in town for Fall Family Weekend, prospective students will be on campus for Autumn at the Woods and the WWU Board of Trustees will be meeting.
According to Jahnae H. Barnett, president of the university, the residence halls were built because William Woods is projecting continued growth in its on-campus student enrollment, and a recent report concluded that demand for on-campus housing would soon exceed the university’s ability to supply it.
William Woods currently has an overall statewide enrollment of approximately 3,000, with 948 students studying on the main campus in Fulton.
“When we look into the future, we know that we must continue to provide a welcoming and inviting residential campus in order to continue to attract and retain quality students,” Barnett said.
The new apartments house 60 students in a suite arrangement. The buildings are for upperclassman, with priority given to seniors. Each furnished suite has four bedrooms, two full baths, a fully equipped kitchen and living area. Each also comes equipped with washer and dryer and wireless internet connectivity.
“Today’s undergraduates have a strong desire for privacy and independent living,” Barnett said. “Our arrangement will accommodate their need for privacy, while also encouraging opportunities to socially engage with others.”
Ida Hoffmann, a senior communications major from Defiance, Mo., sees the apartments as a wonderful asset to William Woods University.
“They allow students a sense of freedom, of self-sufficient living, while still allowing them quick access to all campus activities and classes,” Hoffmann said. “The setup allows each student a blend of camaraderie and independence, creating the perfect environment for college students.”
President Barnett pointed out that a unique aspect of the new residential center is that it provides “a true living and learning environment.”
In a desire to accommodate both the physical and spiritual health of the students, the university created an Office of Faith and Service, which shares one of the apartments with health and counseling services.
Stone-Campbell Memorial Hall is named for Barton W. Stone and Alexander Campbell, who are considered founding fathers of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ). The name was chosen by the residence hall’s major donor, who continues to remain anonymous.
A special guest at the dedication will be Dennis Landon, president of the Higher Education and Leadership Ministries (HELM) of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ). HELM assisted with the start-up costs to create the Office of Faith and Service last year with a grant of $15,000.
The Rev. Travis Tamerius, coordinator of the Office of Faith and Service, will emcee the dedication ceremony. He serves as university chaplain and provides value-based programming for the LEAD campus and community involvement program.
William Woods University has been part of the Christian Church of Missouri since the church acquired the Female Academy of Camden Point, Mo., in 1870 with the goal of providing “proper schooling for the orphans of the Civil War.”
When fire destroyed the school in 1889, the church fathers decided to rebuild in a new location, and Fulton was selected. The first 52 students arrived in Fulton in the fall of 1890.
From those humble beginnings, William Woods University has grown into its present stature as an independent, professions-oriented liberal arts institution, offering both graduate and undergraduate degrees in a variety of disciplines in both campus and outreach settings.
“We are grateful to our many generous donors who continue to enhance our university and engage our students through contributions, dedication and support,” Barnett said. “With such assistance, we will continue to grow and improve for years to come.”