Central State hopes construction will attract students

Central State student center construction. (WDTN Photo)
Central State student center construction. (WDTN Photo)

WILBERFORCE, Ohio (WDTN) – Phase two of major construction for Central State University is waiting for financial approval.  The Ohio Controlling Board, which gives money for capital improvements, is set to vote on that project Monday.

In the meantime, the board has already given CSU $10 million for the first phase to build a new $28.7 million, 90,000 square foot university student center.   Its features include a 600 seat dining hall, ballroom, black box theater, bookstore, campus offices and conference rooms.  A major highlight for the school is that the center will offer facilities for the entire  community.

CSU is betting this multi million dollar center will improve the college experience for prospective students.

Gayle Colston Barge, public relations director for  CSU, admits the building is a recruitment tool for the university.

That is important for the school that has been fighting dropping enrollment and because of a tight budget, recently cut 17 staff positions.  Barge says CSU is like every other university.

It needs, she says, to continue to push for higher enrollment, encourage more giving from alumni and look for more research grants to expand the university brand.


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