Health Services plans their relocation to Eastman

in News/SCSU News by

Team story contribution from Dannie Daluge, Brittany Dahlk, Samantha Bennett, Austin Tema, and Zach Anderson

In approximately two years time, renovations will begin on the Eastman Building on the St. Cloud State University campus to transform it into the new campus health services.
The St. Cloud State Health Services has been helping students, from both St. Cloud State and St. Cloud Technical and Community College, for the past 85 years. According to a fact sheet provided by the health services, Vice-President of Student Affairs at St. Cloud Technical College Phil Schroeder said “from lower cost health care visits and access to pharmacy services, vaccinations, screening and athlete physicals, and emergency mental health referrals, we have relied on St. Cloud State University’s Student Health Services for an array of direct services to our students.”
The Health Services is currently located on the first floor of Hill Hall, one of the dormitories on the SCSU’s campus. Because it is discretely located in the back of a dormitory, the space is limited, which means that services cannot perform to their best ability.
Jake Petrik, student and community advisor at St. Cloud State, explained, “the staff are great, they’re always friendly, welcoming and knowledgeable. But, the office’s location is hard for some people to find and the small area feels really cramped.”
From routine checkups and vaccinations to minor surgeries, the St. Cloud University’s Health Services can play a large part in a student’s life here on campus. A student’s health can have a major impact on their academic performance which is why having an advanced, up to date health services here to serve the students is extremely important. “I work with international students, if they get sick and have an emergency, it tends to add a lot more stress and it could make their homesickness worse, which could affect their studies. Even non-international students get homesick when they aren’t feeling well, so having a trustworthy, welcoming health services could make all the difference,” said Petrik.
With flu season right around the corner, Nurse Manager Stacie Black said now this is the busiest time of the school year for the staff.
Black said, “we have students coming in everyday for the flu shot, the convenience of being able to get the shot on campus is great for students.”
Students also come in to the office for things ranging from the common cold to something more serious like the flu or minor surgeries and stitches. As of now, we provide anything form routine health exams, travel health preparation, like vaccines, and if we need to, we can refer you to another doctor who specializes in something more specific.”
The importance of the health services on campus and the need for a bigger and better location has not gone unnoticed. Architects are in the pre-designing process of renovating a building on campus that is currently not in use.
Eastman Hall was built in 1929; it’s currently the fourth oldest building on campus and originally was used for physical recreation.
The building includes a pool and a large gymnasium. Eastman Hall served as the campus’ physical education building until Halenbeck Hall opened in 1965. Not only will the new renovated building be home to the health services, the Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS) along with the U-Choose Program, which is an education based campus prevention effort which focuses on the reduction of high-risk alcohol and drug use, will also be making the move to Eastman.
“We often refer students that come into the health services to the counseling services, which is located in Steward Hall,” the Health Services director Corie Beckermann. “It would make things more convenient for everyone, the staff and the students.”
Renovation of Eastman Hall will create a greater integration of academic and student services programs. “A big part of this project is called experiential learning,” said facilities manager John Frischmann.
Since this is a health services facility on a college campus, it’s a great opportunity for the future workers in the medical field to get experience. In giving the students this opportunity to gain experience, the university is preparing the students for life and work in the 21st century. “As we have the staff doing work, we can have the students learning alongside them, seeing how work is done in the real world, “ said Frischmann.
In order to keep the space open and inviting, Frischmann says that the tentative plans are to have the basement have the general storage and mechanical rooms. The first floor is where you’ll find the health services, offices and some classrooms. On the second floor, you’ll find the exam rooms, more offices and laboratory. To add even more space, a new floor is in the works. This is where you’ll find the counseling services and the UChoose program offices.
A spacious and visually appealing health services center is just what this campus needs. “I think the renovations to this building will make that part of campus more visually appealing to future and present students and visitors,” said SCSU junior Emily Mitchell.
In the not so distant future, the St. Cloud State University campus will be getting a much needed update A historic, now empty building will soon be renovated into something that will benefit all students and staff, the health services. As said by the fact sheet from St. Cloud States Health Services, “these renovations will strengthen our ability to service a growing diverse student population.”

Team story contribution from Dannie Daluge, Brittany Dahlk, Samantha Bennett, Austin Tema, and Zach Anderson