Is the School of Communication Studies too big for Taylor Hall?

Amy Szabo

With new faculty members joining CCI make the new building a tight squeeze

The School of Communication Studies will become too large for Taylor Hall next fall.

With three new faculty members joining the staff, the school will surpass its allotted space in Taylor, said Stan Wearden, director of the School of Communication Studies.

In the last four years, the enrollment of the school has increased 98 percent. From last fall to this fall, the school has seen an 11 percent increase in enrollment.

“The program is becoming a lot more popular,” Wearden said.

The school moved to Taylor Hall from the Music and Speech Center over the summer and has just finally settled into its new offices and classrooms.

More classroom space is available to the school in Taylor than at its previous location, Wearden said. The total square footage is nearly the same, but it has more classrooms.

“The hallways and classrooms are full of students, and we like to see that,” Wearden said.

And the classrooms are full, nearly to the point of overflowing. The hall has eight Communication Studies classrooms on the first floor.

In one situation the school had registered 50 students for a sports communication class that only had seating for 49, Wearden said. Enough room was made available when one student dropped the class before it began.

When classes let out, the usually narrow halls become narrower.

“It feels small, and in some ways that’s a nice feeling,” Wearden said. “It feels busy.”

Rachel Stevens, a senior communication studies major, agreed with Wearden.

“It’s a tight fit, but it serves its purpose,” Stevens said.

“I don’t want to give the impression that its a bad building,” she said.

“It’s really not so much the size of the classrooms so much as it’s just the total amount of space,” Wearden said.

With the faculty of the school finally on one floor, the idea of having three new faculty members where only two rooms are available is the main problem, Wearden said.

The true reason behind the move in the first place was not to grant the school more space for its growing numbers. Wearden said because of the Roe Green donation to the schools of theater and dance, the School of Communication Studies had to relocate.

“The university had to find some place to put us,” Wearden said.

A portion of the Roe Green gift was used to help renovate the first floor of Taylor Hall to accommodate the school, as well as the use of Ohio’s capital fund that had been granted to the university.

Above all, Wearden wanted to make it clear that he’s really thrilled with the space, the only problem is that the school has outgrown it.

A new location is not the solution.

“That’s not really the way it works at a university,” Wearden said with a laugh.

Contact CCI reporter Amy Szabo at [email protected].