ITS and CEC to switch offices; move computer labs

The Community Engagement Center and Office of International Programs in Sorenson will switch places with the ITS department in Olin this summer.
The multimedia computer lab and printers in Olin will move to the College Center where Freshens was located and the first floor of Olin will be partially reconstructed.
Jeffrey Ratliff-Crain, associate dean of curriculum and enrichment, said students along with administration pushed for the move.
“It’s in response to things we’ve heard from students about how services, especially in the Careers and Internships offices, are at a part of campus that wasn’t readily available,” Ratliff-Crain said.
Ratliff-Crain said another reason for the move was a desire for the business offices in Sorenson to be closer to ITS.
The ITS department is located on the first and third floors of Olin and will be moved to sections of the first floor of Sorenson.
Shawn Beattie, manager of educational technologies, said ITS will be supporting technological training and web services remotely after the move but thinks the move will be beneficial.
“I see the benefits to having the CEC in a central location,” said Beattie. “It’s the same benefits we have enjoyed here.”
The CEC, Office of International Programs, the entrepreneurial office, and the Center for Vocational Reflection will be moved to the first floor of Olin.
Johnna Adam, director of internships and careers office, said the CEC had more foot traffic when Old Main was closed last year and the College Center Dining Hall was open.
“With the increased focus on experiential learning it puts us at the center of campus where we’re more accessible to students,” said Adam.
ITS offices on the third floor of Olin will be replaced by a faculty enrichment center, an Upper Mississippi Center, a center for research, Augie Choice offices, and public health offices.
With the multimedia lab moving to the College Center, two of the connecting computer labs in Olin will join into one space for CEC and Internships offices.
The video game lounge room in Olin will be turned into the entrepreneurial center. Printers will be kept in the computer lab at the end of the first floor and 12 computers will be kept. Two additional group computer tables will be added to this area.
Ratliff-Crain said administration is looking to expand services in advising and internships and hire a director of advising.
“We want an interface with academic support as well as faculty, but we wanted to keep Olin an active engagement for students later in the day too,” Ratliff-Crain said.
The math and computer science classes, which are held on the second floor of Olin, will be affected by ITS’s move.
“They’ve come to rely on ITS being very available and they have a high need for them,” said Ratliff-Crain.
Dean Pareena Lawrence and Ratliff-Crain met with SGA members and student ambassadors to spread the word of the move across campus.
Ratliff-Crain said the initial concern from the student body was a potential loss of study space but “students think it will work.
The movement of offices and reconstruction in Olin will happen during the summer after grades for spring term are finalized. The reconstruction is projected to be complete when students come back to school in August.
If students have questions on the move and reconstruction, they can email Ratcliff-Crain at [email protected]