Governor Helps Dedicate New Wor-Wic Building
August 22, 2005

Gov. Robert Ehrlich and other state and local dignitaries joined Wor-Wic Community College board members, employees, students and friends for ribbon cutting and dedication ceremonies for a new Student Center at the college campus on the corner of Route 50 and Walston Switch Road in Salisbury. Guests also toured the new building and enjoyed lunch in the new food service and dining areas of the building.

Gov. Ehrlich talked to the crowd of more than 200 about the role of community colleges in meeting the state’s workforce development needs. He said that employers who talk to him always mention that community colleges are training their workers. He also addressed the importance of partnerships between government agencies, community colleges and the business community, and mentioned a new $10,000 Department of Business and Economic Development grant Wor-Wic received to train employees of local manufacturing companies.

The governor also talked about how community colleges are growing to meet the needs of Maryland’s higher education students. In fiscal year 2006, Gov. Enrlich said the state earmarked $45.7 million for community college facilities, the highest in the state’s history.

Dr. Ray Hoy, president of Wor-Wic, expressed his thanks for the state’s support of the new facility. “There was a serious lack of student study space and meeting areas here at Wor-Wic, and we did not have a campus-based food service operation,” he said. “The new Student Center addresses all of these issues.”

Located south of the Academic and Administrative Building and Guerrieri Hall, the new Student Center contains a kitchen, 240-seat dining area, an office for student clubs, study space, lounge space, meeting rooms, faculty and staff offices, storage, a cyber café and a game room and expanded bookstore.

“We are looking forward to the fall semester, when classes will be back in full swing and the campus will be swarming with students,” Hoy said. “The new Student Center is going to have a great impact on our student body and employees.”

Construction of the 30,000 gross square foot addition to the existing Student Center began early in 2004. The design of the exterior windows is a prime feature of the building. Study and lounge areas overlook the entire campus through a 550 square foot wall of glass on the north side of the building. Tall ceilings and strategically-placed windows on the east side of the building make the dining area bright and airy.

“As we celebrate our 30th anniversary this year, we are proud of the success of our community college, but we are most proud of the success of our students,” said Russell W. Blake, chairman of the Wor-Wic board of trustees. “Our students need and deserve a building like this.”

The Student Center will house a new director of student activities, as well as several faculty members. Student organizations will have an office, as well as meeting and storage spaces. A much-needed study and lounge area will allow students an opportunity to network, study and relax between classes.

The $8 million Student Center was funded by the State of Maryland, the Wicomico County Council and the Worcester County Comissioners. The architect for the Student Center was Ayers/Saint/Gross of Baltimore and the contractor was Gillis Gilkerson of Salisbury.

BUILDING DEDICATED. Cutting the ribbon at dedication ceremonies for the new Student Center at Wor-Wic Community College are, from left, John E. Bloxom, president of the Worcester County Commissioners; Dr. Calvin W. Burnett, secretary of the Maryland Higher Education Commission; Russell W. Blake, chairman of the Wor-Wic board of trustees; Gov. Robert Ehrlich; Dr. Ray Hoy, president of Wor-Wic; Boyd K. Rutherford, secretary of the Maryland Department of General Services; and Anthony S. Sarbanes, president of the Wicomico County Council.