Regents approve multiple construction and maintenance projects
The University of Alaska Board of Regents approved multiple construction and maintenance projects throughout the state during a two-day meeting that wrapped up in Anchorage on Friday, June 8. Approved projects included a schematic design of the engineering buildings in Anchorage and Fairbanks, as well as the UAA Mat-Su Valley Center for Arts and Learning. Formal approval of the Main Apartment Complex (MAC) housing renewal at UAA was granted and the UAA campus master plan amended to include the engineering parking garage. Also approved were schematics of phase 2 for electrical upgrades at UAF.
"All projects were approved as proposed with a few questions about egresses, green spaces and varied specific design concerns. These are not just dirt piles but the spectacular picture of the progress going on our campuses,” said Regent Kirk Wickersham.
Regents approved naming the ridge on which the the UAF campus is built, Troth Yeddha’. During public testimony Native elders, linguists and others testified to the importance of the recognition of the ridge where the university is located by its Athabaskan place name, translated as “wild potato ridge.” Recognition of the place name reinforces the connection between the University of Alaska’s mission and Native culture.
President Pat Gamble presented the annual "Staff Make Students Count" award to four UA staffers for their outstanding service to students: Marsha Squires, UAS; Kathy Smith, UAA; Joe Hayes, UAF; Kate Wattum UA. The staff members were nominated by their peers, and selected by their local governance groups.
"Giving out this award warms the heart. These individuals have been selected by their peers and have truly gone above and beyond," Gamble said.
The regents enjoyed a tour of the newly completed Health Sciences Building at UAA. Board of Regents Chair Pat Jacobson said, "The building is stunning and clearly state-of-the-art." The tour included a visit to the medical simulation rooms, teaching/examine stations, smart classrooms and cadaver lab. The Health Sciences Building was completed in August 2011 and the programs are specifically designed to prepare graduates for work in Alaska's rapidly growing health care industry.
Health Sciences Building at UAA
The new Health Science Building has iPad signs installed outside all rooms. Each digital sign is networked into a central program that lists all class and meeting schedules for each room. A UAA programmer developed this use, which is unique to this building. "The building is stunning and clearly state-of-the-art," said Board of Regents Chair Pat Jacobson.
Regents tour part of the facilities available to university students at the new Health Sciences Building at UAA.
Students demonstrate an exam in the new teaching facility.
Pictured from left, Robert Charlie, Athabascan Elder from Minto and part-time employee at the Geophysical Institute; Dr. James Kari, retired linguist, Alaska Native Language Center at UAF; and Annette Freiburger, Coordinator, Nenana Center, Interior Aleutians Campus, all testified on behalf of the importance of naming the ridge that runs east/west on the UAF campus as, Troth Yeddha’.
Green Bike Program
The regents enjoyed a student presentation on UAA's Green Bike Program. Students refurbished bikes donated from the Anchorage police department, stripped them down, replaced broken parts, tuned them up and painted them green. They will be placed at locked locations around campus. Eventually students will be able to use their WOLF id cards to scan and check them out and check them in at specified bike kiosks. This will allow the activities department to monitor usage and prevent theft and also charge for extended use. Student presentation was by Mabil Duir, Political Science and Richard Bullock, Business Management.