Communication Studies school moves to Taylor Hall

Michelle Bender

The School of Communication Studies will soon find a new home in Taylor Hall after outgrowing its limited space in the Music and Speech Center.

The move will come with renovations and upgrades to classrooms and faculty offices to enhance the education of the students and to bring the program’s faculty together.

If all goes well, all of the offices and classrooms will be in use by the second week of July.

“This is going to bring us in line with other communication studies programs around the country,” assistant professor Barbara Hugenberg said.

Stan Wearden, director of the School of Communication Studies, said the renovated classrooms are equipped with new technology, including 70 new laptops for class use. He also said six of the eight classrooms have video recorders built into the rooms so students can record speeches for use in portfolios.

Hugenberg said she is delighted with the new technology because the communication studies program needs to be on the cutting edge. She said she has hoped students would be able to watch and critique themselves giving speeches, and now with the new technology they will be able to do that.

Wearden said the communication studies major has grown by 41 percent, making more space necessary, but he is worried the school will outgrow the new space because the program is growing fast.

“The Music and Speech Center has been great,” Hugenberg said. “But we outgrew it.”

Wearden said another reason for the move is because the program’s faculty has been scattered. He said there are currently faculty on three floors in the Music and Speech Center and some in Nixson Hall. The move to Taylor Hall will bring the entire program’s faculty into the same building and same floor.

Hugenberg said having the entire faculty together will enhance interaction and make faculty members feel more like a community in the school. She also said the faculty members teaching the May 4 class are excited to be near the memorial and the new May 4 Resource Room.

“Any time you make a major upgrade, it’s good for the image of the university,” Hugenberg said.

Office systems specialist Kelly Schobinger has been managing and overseeing the construction and move. She said scheduling and coordinating everything to get the classrooms up and ready has been a challenge. She also said four out of eight classrooms are running and in use, but there have been problems getting the flooring in the other rooms.

Wearden said the School of Communication Studies hoped to be moved in by the beginning of the summer semester, but the move was delayed because carpeting was on back order.

Contact College of Communication and Information reporter Michelle Bender at [email protected].