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Nov. 19, 2014
(Updated Nov. 21, 2014)
The Northwest Missouri State University Board of Regents on Wednesday approved a proposed construction budget and authorized University leaders to execute a construction contract, allowing Northwest to move forward on a plan to remodel its former aquatic center into a state-of-the-art fitness center.
The Board approved the project, not to exceed a total cost of nearly $4.4 million, and authorized the University to award the construction contract to Lee Grover Construction Co., of St. Joseph, Mo. Northwest will pay for the project with University and donor funds as well as student fees.
The University’s imagining of the Robert and Virginia Foster Fitness Center will allow it to relocate, expand and upgrade its fitness facilities, Northwest President Dr. John Jasinski said. Currently, Northwest’s fitness center is located in the basement of the Lamkin Activity Center and no longer meets the needs of University students and employees.
“We are thankful for the Board’s support and know our students, employees and community as well as prospective students will be thrilled with this project,” Jasinski said. “It continues the positive momentum across so many areas at Northwest.”
The project calls for a complete remodel of the existing 4,000 square-foot pool area into a fitness center featuring weightlifting machines and a variety of other fitness equipment. Plans also call for a 1,330 square-foot entryway to be added to the existing structure along with a 2,300 square-foot mezzanine overlooking Colden Pond and the Joyce and Harvey White International Plaza. The facility also will include academic laboratory space.
Construction is scheduled to begin Monday, Nov. 24, with completion targeted for August 2015.
The Board of Regents, in March, approved the renaming of the former Foster Aquatic Center to the Robert and Virginia Foster Fitness Center and a $4 per-credit-hour-fitness fee that will be implemented to support the facility’s construction and operations. The Northwest community subsequently gathered in May for a ceremony to celebrate the renaming and the Foster family’s legacy.
With an enrollment of more than 6,700 students, Northwest is a coeducational, primarily residential four-year university that offers a broad range of undergraduate and selected graduate programs. This fall, Northwest is ranked as the top moderately selective regional university in Missouri on U.S. News and World Report’s list of “2015 Best Colleges.”
The University boasts a 59 percent graduation rate, which is about 20 percent higher than the national average. In addition, 98 percent of Northwest bachelor’s degree earners and 99 percent of master’s degree earners secure employment or continue their education within six months of graduation, according to the most recent data.
Furthermore, its vibrant and diverse learning community offers more than 150 student organizations, and textbooks and a laptop are included in tuition, which is among the lowest in the state, saving students an estimated $7,200 over four years. Northwest also offers 1,200 student employment positions, allowing students to build professional skills through its internationally benchmarked student employment program.
Mark Hornickel, Communication Manager
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Northwest Missouri State University
215 Administration Building | 800 University Drive | Maryville, MO 64468