SCCC to Host Ribbon Cutting, Open House for New Building
Joe Denoyer - January 2, 2020 9:59 am
By Rachel Coleman
Colvin Family Center for Allied Health officially opens Jan. 9
Seward County Community College welcomes the public to celebrate the opening of the Colvin Family Center for Allied Health at a ribbon-cutting and open house slated for the afternoon of Jan. 9, 2020. The event marks the completion of a seven-year process launched by the SCCC Foundation’s capital campaign in 2013.
“We are so excited to welcome everyone to this Chamber of Commerce ribbon-cutting and historic SCCC event,” said SCCC Vice President of Student Services Celeste Donovan, who also serves as Liberal Area Chamber of Commerce President. “I think people will be so impressed to see this state-of-the-art addition to our community.”
Students began attending classes in the brand-new, $4.2 million building in stages over the fall semester, said SCCC Dean of Allied Health, Dr. Suzanne Campbell.
“It has been a gradual process,” she said, noting that Allied Health has been housed in the Epworth Allied Health Education Center, a repurposed hospital in downtown Liberal, for several decades. “Because of the length of time the Allied Health Division has inhabited that aging structure and the lab equipment and materials to be moved, we felt it made the most sense to move program by program with the least disruption to our students’ learning.”
Construction firm Coonrod & Associates began work on the building in November 2018, to specifications created by the design firm Architect One. SCCC Vice President of Finance & Operations Dennis Sander said the process went smoothly, despite 2018’s record-breaking rainy weather.
“We couldn’t be happier with our contractors, who pushed hard to finish on time,” he said. “The college also appreciates Coonrod’s commitment to using as many local subcontractors as possible for aspects of this project. It truly represents community stakeholders.”
“It is a beautiful building with a much more modern feel,” Campbell added. “The efficient use of space allows the four Allied Health programs and the respective faculty to be all on one level with easy access for students. The centrally located clinical simulation laboratory will provide an opportunity for interprofessional education among the various healthcare students. This space allows faculty to create scenarios for students to assess patients, determine the appropriate treatment and to work side by side with other members of the healthcare team.”
An opportunity for future expansion exists in the floor plan that would enable the certified nurse aide and certified medication aide classrooms and faculty to move to the new building.
The Center is so named in honor of the Colvin family, beginning with benefactors Bill and Virginia Colvin, now deceased. Their legacy continued with the extended family and Kent and Molly Colvin, culminating in a $1 million gift to the project.
“We are fortunate to have incredible community support for this project, starting with the SCCC Foundation itself,” said SCCC President, Dr. Ken Trzaska. “Through the tireless efforts of that volunteer board, this building became reality entirely through donations and outside funding. Taxpayers have not seen increases in the mill levy, and in fact, the college’s own board of trustees has been able to reduce the tax rate slightly during the time of this project.”
Campbell noted the ultimate benefit of the building comes back to the region’s residents.
“If you’ve had surgery, or needed a respiratory therapist, if you have blood drawn or depend on lab results, those are students we’ve trained, along with our nursing students,” she said. SCCC graduates of the medical laboratory technology, nursing, respiratory therapy and surgical technology programs are vital to the employment levels of regional healthcare facilities. Each of the Allied Health programs maintains an external accreditation that ensures our graduates demonstrate an entry-level clinical competency which results in positive patient outcomes.
The ribbon-cutting and open house event is set for 2 to 5 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 9, at the new building on SCCC’s main campus, 1801 N. Kansas Ave., Liberal. Open to the public, the celebration offers refreshments, self-guided tours, and an opportunity to meet representatives from Architect One.
For more information, call SCCC at 620-624-1951.