Volume 77, Issue 10
November 18, 2005

Senior Class to Donate Outdoor Classroom

By Andy Abbott
Elm Staff Writer

Senior Class President Becky Binns has announced this year's senior class gift to the Washington College community. The Class of 2006 will be giving Washington College an outdoor classroom, to be built in the area behind Goldstein Hall.

The decision was influenced by the opportunity for seniors to help hands-on with this gift. According to Binns, the outdoor classroom project will "add to the visual appearance of the Washington College campus so [seniors] will be able to see it years later when [they] come back for alumni events." Binns also explained that this project will "create an area that can be utilized by students, faculty, and the community."

The Class of 2005 supplied the Miller Library with a subscription to "The New York Times Since 1851," an online archive. This year's graduating class chose to provide a gift that adds to the look of the campus.

The Class of 2006 originally wanted to furnish an outdoor project close to the John S. Toll Science Center Complex, equipped with benches and a fountain. But because the project idea conflicted with the Washington College Strategic Plan, the idea was scratched, and the senior class officers returned to the drawing board and came up with the final project.

In addition to the senior class officers, Binns, Vice President Leslie Meredith, Secretary Mary Campbell, and Treasurer Jacyln Moore, senior class advisor and director of annual giving Nancy Young and Executive Vice President Joseph Holt assisted with selecting the gift.

The design of the classroom and surrounding area has not been finalized, but the preliminary plan entails an outdoor classroom behind Goldstein, close to the Larabee Arts Center, and replacing some, if not all, of the benches in the area. A weatherproof chalkboard, backless benches to allow a choice in which direction to face, and larger trees to provide shade will be included in the project. The officers still need to meet with a landscaper to draft sketches.

Professor Michael Harvey, Chair of the Department of Business Management, said, "I'm very excited about an outdoor classroom on our campus." He believes a "change of routine makes students listen and participate better."

To finance the project, the senior class officers are asking for donations of $20.06 from every member of the Class of 2006, and they also encourage students, faculty, staff, family, and friends to donate. In exchange for their contribution, donators will receive a custom designed black lapel pin with gold embellishments in the shape of George Washington's head.

Depending on the donator's request, the pin will read "Washington College 1782" or "1782 Washington College Class of 2006." Those who wish to donate and obtain a pin order form should contact Binns at class_2006@washcoll.edu.

In addition to the pin fundraiser, the senior class is sponsoring an event on Saturday, December 3rd, "Chilly? Warm Up with Hot Rock and the Heat Strokes!"

The class officers hope to have the outdoor classroom completed well before graduation so that seniors can see their gift to WC before they part ways.