Students return to third floor of Reynolds Hall after completion of renovations

Susannah Schrader

            After spending more than half of 2016 under construction, the third floor of Reynolds Hall is open to students and faculty for the first time since it underwent remodeling. The remodel, which began after the end of the 2016 spring semester, focused on the entire third floor of the 52-year-old building. The third floor was opened to students on January 17, the first day of the Spring 2017 semester.

            The remodel is one of the most extensive jobs Southern has done in a while, encompassing the entirety of the third floor. Some of the new amenities found on the new floor are chemistry labs, physics labs, tiered classrooms, and student study rooms. The building, which is home to mostly math and science classes, is one of the oldest on Southern’s campus.

            “[Reynolds] was built in 1952, so it needed a lot of help,” said Bob Harrington, the director of Physical Plant. Harrington oversaw the team of renovators who worked on the building over the course of the past seven months.

            Chris Harman, a junior pre-engineering major, explained that while it could be frustrating listening to the sounds of construction above the classrooms, the new hallway is a fantastic addition to the building.

            “The payout was well worth it,” Harman said. “The renovations not only bring forth a new aesthetic, but improvements to the classrooms and labs that improve the overall learning experience.”

            Though there are still boxes to be unloaded and more work to be done upstairs, the teachers of Reynolds Hall are happy just to be able to use the third floor. Dr. Dan Marsh of the physics department explained that the renovations are a welcome change to the floor plan.    

            “I think [the renovations] make people interested in the newer rooms,” Marsh said. “The way it’s set up, we can rearrange it any way we want to, we can do studio-type teaching. We can do a demonstration instead of just a lecture.”

            Marsh explained that the new setup of the physics lab allows him to move around the classroom more, as well as provides him more board space.

            Faculty are still working on getting the proper lab equipment moved into each room, but even just having projector capabilities and more electrical outlets are helping to improve the classroom experience already.