As Augustana Campus begins another school year, more than 900 new and returning students will notice a few changes.
The library, a long-awaited building, was turned over to the university in late August. Library staff have been working all summer to integrate books from the old library and other collection sites – a colossal task – in preparation for the move. Technology and Learning Services staff have also outfitted a new computer server room and provided other support for the building project. With keys in hand, the job of furnishing the space, moving books, and installing computers has been compressed into a very short space of time.
A tentative opening date has now been set for Monday, September 14.
“We know students are anxious to move into what will be a spectacular, spacious, well-designed library,” said Dean Roger Epp. “The fact we’re this close is the result of incredible hard work and dedication on the part of a lot of people on campus and throughout the university this summer.”
Construction on the Forum has also been steady during the summer with an expected completion date of spring 2010.
New buildings aren’t the only changes evident on campus. Nestled between the Science Extension and Founders’ Hall, a water feature now provides a picturesque spot for staff, students, and visitors. While landscaping and seating are still expected, the stream provides a welcome addition to the campus.
As Augustana continues its transformation, it also celebrates another increase in student numbers, welcoming more than 330 new students – and about 925 students in total – to campus. Those numbers are up about 50 from September 2008. The increase comes mostly from communities across Alberta, including aboriginal communities. Augustana’s students also come from seven other provinces, two territories, and 22 countries in Africa, Asia, Europe and North America.
For the first time in several years, the student residences are close to capacity.
The Augustana student numbers do not include about 40 Faculty of Nursing students in Camrose and a similar number of Emergency Medical Services students who will complete their diplomas in 2009-10 before the program is fully transferred to Lakeland College.