Thursday, October 2, 2008
A dream comes true at the University of West Georgia this fall when the UWG Foundation, Inc. breaks ground to construct a Greek Village on the north end of campus.
The official groundbreaking ceremony is set for Saturday, Oct. 4, at 5p.m. at the site located behind the Townsend Center for the Performing Arts. UWG supporters are invited to attend and then enjoy UWG Football as the Wolves take on Henderson State at 7 p.m. at Grisham Stadium.
Approximately 850 students are part of the Greek system at UWG that includes three governing councils: Panhellenic, Interfraternity and National Pan-Hellenic. Seven fraternities and six sororities have committed to houses that will be ready for occupancy in fall 2009.
According to Dr. Melanie McClellan, vice president for Student Affairs and Enrollment Management, the university is not allowed to use public funds to construct housing. The Village will be financed in the same way as other recent public-private construction projects at UWG and other campuses.
“The UWG Foundation, Inc. sold bonds to finance the construction and will then lease the houses to the university who will manage them and rent them to student,” she explained. “This allows the Foundation to pay back the costs of the bonds and allows the university to eventually own the houses.”
The houses range in size from six students to 20 students. Individual students pay rent for their rooms and each chapter will also pay an annual rental fee to cover the cost of the community areas that include parking, outdoor recreation and a community building with a large living room, four meeting/study rooms, and two hotel-type rooms for national chapter consultants and other guests.
“Greek Village is designed to tie together UWG’s past and future, to create a community that will help students develop lifelong ties with each other and the university,” McClellan said. “The two-story red brick houses with white columns are reminiscent of the architecture of UWG’s oldest buildings on Front Campus Drive, but they are designed to meet the needs of students of today and tomorrow.”
Plans for the Greek Village were developed over several years, with input from multiple sources. UWG’s 2001 Strategic Plan and 2003 Master Plan re-emphasized the need to develop a Greek Village. Recommendations came from national consultants, student focus groups, national research and a 12-member steering committee of students, faculty, staff and alumni.
A second event designed especially for Greek alumni, the Greek Village Rally, will be hosted at Homecoming on Saturday, Oct. 18, from 11 a.m. - noon. For all the Greek alumni in town for Homecoming, this event will allow them to visit the site, see the project renderings, have group photos taken, and learn more about the construction options for each chapter house.