WWU to Open New Residential Facilities

Students have begun trickling in to two new apartment-style residential facilities that were completed on the William Woods University campus this summer.

Some students who worked on campus this summer will relocate from Cockrell Hall to the new buildings tomorrow. A few fall athletes reporting for practice will move in then, too. Peer mentors will arrive Aug. 15. New freshmen and transfer students will arrive on August 18.

The floodgates will open Aug. 22—that’s when all residential students are expected to be back on campus. Classes start Aug. 24.

“I’m excited to live in the new apartments because of all the perks that come with living there. They offer more space, have wireless internet, a full kitchen, and I get my own room,” Becky Vanderhook, a senior psychology major from Martinsburg, Mo., said.

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 exceeding 3,000, with nearly 800 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, which are the first living quarters built since 1977, will 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.

“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.”

The buildings are located on the southeast corner of West 12th and Ewing streets, where a small complex of senior apartments previously stood.

“A unique aspect of this new residential center is that it will be a true living and learning environment,” Barnett said.

In a desire to accommodate both the physical and spiritual health of the students, the university has created an Office of Faith and Service, which shares one of the apartments with health and counseling services.

The offices are located in Stone-Campbell Memorial Hall, 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 facility’s major donor, who continues to remain anonymous.

The Division of Higher Education (DHE) of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) 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 is the coordinator of the Office of Faith and Service. 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.”