The following article was run in the Feb. 14, 2013 issue of The Whitetopper, written by news editor Nora Davis.
Now that the Woodrow H. McGlothlin Center for the Arts building has been approved for construction, students and staff have been assessing the impact that the building will have upon Emory & Henry College.
Vice President for Academic Affairs, David Haney, thinks the building will have two big effects. The first effect will concern academic programs and the second will concern E&H’s regional influence. “We’re going to see an increase of interest among students in music, art, and theater,” Haney said. “And I think we’re going to be much more of a player in the regional arts scene.”
President Rosalind Reichard stated that the new arts center will contribute to E&H’s academic program.
“For me, the arts are an aspect of our education that really helps to develop the creative process for students,” Reichard said. “I think it’s extremely important that all of our students are able to be impacted by the performing and visual arts.”
Senior Nick Dennis is a vocal music education major. He said he is excited to see the progress made on the building. Dennis admits that the delay has been frustrating, seeing many other buildings erected on campus before breaking ground on the new arts center.
He admitted that he isn’t quite sure what stage the building is in currently, but said the enthusiasm of the faculty has positive signs for the progress. Dennis said having the building will be an effective way of building the performing arts programs.
“I think it will be a great way to expand lessons in the arts,” Dennis said.
Beyond college plays, concerts, and art exhibits, Haney stated the college has an overall plan that is designed to maximize the use of the arts building.
“We’ve developed a strategic plan for the arts center which involves both doing things for the college and looking at traveling performances and traveling productions that might be, say, doing a show in North Carolina and on their way we would pick them up here,” Haney said.
Haney stressed the college will have to think about “what sort of niche we should have as a performing arts venue.”
Haney, as well as President Reichard , indicate that the college wants the art building to benefit all students, not just those who are majoring in the arts.
Junior Ashley Helbert, a studio art major, said the new facility will mean a lot to all of the artistic departments.
“We’ve been looking forward to this project for a long time. It will be a wonderful upgrade to some of the current spaces in use now,” Helbert said.
She said she just wishes she could attend the College for a longer period of time to enjoy the new facilities.
Senior John Satterfield-Doerr will be returning to E&H as a fifth-year senior next fall. Satterfield-Doerr, a double major in English and sociology, does not think the building will have any direct impact on his education. He said this opinion would have remained the same even if it would have been completed earlier in his college career.
However, he thinks the use can be expanded for the campus population.
“It all comes down to how available the administration and the art department would have made the building to students who were not involved in the arts,” Satterfield-Doerr said.
As previously reported, the College will break ground on the new center for the arts in April.