Goin' for Gold: New Student Services Building Planned
A new building at MCC that will house student services is in development, creating a one-stop location for Admissions, Financial Aid, the Scholarships Office, Student Accounts, Advising, the Registrar and First-Year Experience. Called the Center for Student Services, it will also include a student lounge, a large multipurpose room, a central lobby area with online admission kiosks, a conference room and office space.
“This building will be a wonderful gateway addition to our campus,” said College President Joann La Perla-Morales. “It will provide a new level of service for students and their families, plus serve as a central location for all enrollment needs. It’ll be our headquarters for student success.”
Alice Picardo, interim dean of enrollment management, said the Center for Student Services will allow MCC to bring all enrollment support services together to create more productive communication for those areas that admit, advise and register students.
“It’ll combine areas that are critical to student success, including Student Accounts and Financial Aid,” she said. “We recognize how important Financial Aid is to our students so this will assist in delivering those services in an optimal way.
“This project shows our students that Middlesex County College values their academic experience, but also the processes that support academic achievement. We want to make the procedures smoother, from their first contact with the College to the time they walk across the stage at graduation. The building will be located at the perimeter of the campus, allowing for easy access from both the parking lots and the interior of the campus. It’ll be a wonderful addition to MCC.”
Middlesex’s most recent building, Crabiel Hall, received a LEED® silver rating from the United States Green Building Council, signifying its environmental attributes. LEED, or Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design, is an internationally recognized mark of excellence that provides building owners with a framework for identifying and implementing practical and measurable green building design, construction, operations and maintenance solutions.
The College is attempting to attain a gold rating for this building.
Donald Drost Jr., executive director of facilities management, said the new, two-story building is approximately 26,000 square feet, and will be near the ecological park, at the corner of Parkside Drive and College Drive East. The project includes improvements to the park – a more defined path, new lighting and benches – as well as upgrading two parking lots and increasing the number of spaces in them.
DMR Architects has been selected and the actual construction is scheduled to start in the summer of 2014, with an opening date of October 2015. It is expected to cost $12 million and will be funded by Chapter 12, a program in which the county government sells bonds, and the state and the county then split the debt service.
“This is going to be a fantastic building that will serve many generations of students,” Mr. Drost said.