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Nursing to move to Springer Center

September 17, 2010

By the end of the year, MacMurray College will be closing the Norris Educational Building and moving the College’s successful nursing program to the Springer Center, where there is more space for the growing program.

The age and design of Norris, particularly its flat roof, have made investment in the building a poor use of the College’s resources. The College has for many years kept the building open despite its relatively greater cost. Chief Financial Officer David McConnell notes that, even though the College has deferred any significant investment in Norris, expecting to cease operations there, the building continues to require significant levels of maintenance based on its age. A recent inspection confirmed that Norris will soon need significant construction, including a new roof – a large investment that is much better used elsewhere.

The move will result in other financial advantages and gives more space to a growing program at MacMurray.

"We are very pleased to be able to move the MacMurray College Nursing program to a new home at the College,” said David Fitz, Dean of the College and Vice President for Academic Affairs. “The Nursing program is consistently the largest major on campus, averaging more than 100 students each year. The move to the Springer Center will provide the program with ample space for its current size and for potential growth.”

There are other significant financial upsides, too. In addition to lowering maintenance costs, energy savings from closing Norris should be substantial, McConnell said. Due to its age and antiquated design, Norris has consumed more than 11 percent of the College’s entire energy expenditures in recent years. With the winter months approaching, the College expects to reap some of those savings this academic year.

This adds to recent efforts by the College to improve the operating efficiencies of its facilities and to reduce its energy footprint. For example, a roof replacement and adding of insulation to Julian Hall over the summer prepared that building for fuller use and was another effort to improve the operating efficiency of the College’s buildings.

The upgrades this summer provided more usable space on campus. With the recent improvements of several buildings, upgraded office and class space is available for the Humanities and Music faculty who now occupy the Springer Center.

According to a timeline of Passavant Area Hospital, medical training and care in the area of the Norris building dates back to 1896, when Our Saviour’s Hospital was founded and the Our Saviour Nursing Program began. Built in the 1950s, the building became the Frank A. Norris Unit of Passavant in 1968. Patient care at the facility ceased in 1981, and Passavant’s nursing school at the hospital was discontinued in 1982 in conjunction with the opening of MacMurray’s Nursing Program. MacMurray purchased the building in 1983.

For more information, contact:

Public Relations, MacMurray College
Work: 217-479-7181 | Cell: 217-883-3340
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