Renovations Underway at Student Center


Renovations are underway at Dalton State’s Pope Student Center, bringing the vintage 1975 interior into the 21st century.

The $4 million renovation is expected to be complete this summer. It includes expanded dining services and more usable space without changing the building’s footprint on campus. The design is by May Architecture, of Atlanta; B.L. Harbert, of Alabama, is the construction firm.

“We’re reorganizing the space and giving the student center an updated look,” said Scott Bailey, vice president for Fiscal Affairs. “We’ve removed the center staircase and will close in the space on the second floor to give us more functionality up there. The stage will be moved. The game room, pool tables, and table tennis will move to its own enclosed space on the lower level. There will be Student Government Association offices, student workrooms, TV rooms, a Veteran Resource Room, and a lactation station. All the Student Life and Academic Resources administrative offices will be on the second floor.”

A new skylight will be installed and the ceiling will feature a honeycomb pattern instead of tiles. The seldom-used second level balcony will be closed in to expand the seating space on that level.

There will be no changes to the bookstore. All offices and services located in the student center will remain available to students throughout the semester, but access to construction areas will be restricted.

“With input from students and staff, we have been able to redesign the student center to better meet the needs of our students,” said Jodi Johnson, vice president for Enrollment and Student Services. “I’m excited to give students new meeting and office spaces for SGA and student organizations, casual gathering spaces, and tutoring and supplemental instruction spaces. These are all areas students indicated were important to them during the planning. The renovation of the student center pairs perfectly with our new residence hall, and both provide modern spaces to support the learning and development of our students.”

Metz Culinary Management, of Pennsylvania, is the new dining service provider. The company will provide an array of options, including a salad bar, sandwich station, grill, meat and vegetable station, pizza station, and a chef’s station. The theme of the chef’s station will rotate but the food will always be prepared to order.