New completion goal for new south quad courtyard


Mackenzie Freund

The current progression of the courtyard, as seen from the top of Lawson Hall. The courtyard is expected to be completed by May 2015.

Mackenzie Freund, City Editor

The original goal for the completion of a housing construction project had to be pushed because of some unavoidable delays, said Mark Hudson, director of Housing and Dining.

The construction project is a memorial courtyard being built in between Andrews and Lawson halls in the South Quad.

Hudson said the idea for the courtyard came from alumni who wanted a memorial set up to honor two former Housing and Dining staff members who died.

He said two issues began the concept of the courtyard.

“We initially thought about putting in a bench for each but the money came in at a level that we could do something bigger,” Hudson said. “At the same time we were talking about what kind of projects we could do to provide a nice service to current residents and also provide a nice visual for people visiting the campus.”

Hudson said the courtyard seemed like the most fitting tribute.

The two former employees were Mark Shaklee and Mike Drake. Shaklee served as the associate director of Housing and Dining for 32 years, and Drake worked for more than a decade with the washer and dryer program and the camera system.

Hudson said Shaklee was in charge of managing all of the department’s facilities issues while Drake helped install the cameras on campus.

More than 600 cameras are installed on campus. Hudson said a majority of them are in public areas of housing units, and some are in academic buildings as well.

Hudson also said about 400 washing and drying machines need to be maintained. Drake helped with both projects.

“Both of these gentlemen worked with a large cross section of the campus and were known for their positive attitude and productive work habits,” Hudson said.

The idea for the courtyard came up in the summer of 2011 during a Housing and Dining staff reunion, and work on the courtyard began in June of 2015.

Alumni and former staff can purchase bricks, pavers and benches that can be engraved through the Alumni Office.

“We coordinate what they want put on their stone, and they pay a price that helps offset the cost of the project,” Hudson said. “We work with Adam’s Memorial in Charleston to do the engraving.”

Hudson said some things delayed the progression of the construction of the courtyard.

The new goal for completion of the project is May of 2016.

“We can’t do much work over the winter and we need to pour concrete and do landscaping,” Hudson said.


Mackenzie Freund can be reached at 581-2812 or at [email protected].