UWG Newnan cuts ribbon on newly renovated north wing with student-centered spaces

Universal design

March 10, 2023
Reading time: 2 minutes, 47 seconds

The University of West Georgia officially opened the newly renovated North Wing of its Newnan Campus on Thursday, responding to the needs and expectations of students who take classes at UWG Newnan.

UWG President Dr. Brendan B. Kelly
Dr. Brendan Kelly

UWG President Dr. Brendan B. Kelly was joined for the ribbon-cutting ceremony by UWG Tanner Health System School of Nursing student Kristie Gardner, Newnan Mayor Keith Brady, Senior Project Manager for Headley Construction Luke Headley and UWG’s Associate Vice President and Chief of Staff Dr. Russell Crutchfield, all of whom made remarks.

“At the University of West Georgia, we are dedicated to curating a first-choice university for the students to whom we are in service, and that work should take place in spaces that are universally designed to meet their needs and expectations in the 21st century,” Kelly said. “We are thrilled to open this renovated space that leverages the footprint of the historical Newnan Hospital in new, innovative ways to support students in their holistic educational experience at UWG.”

Kelly also expressed gratitude to the supporters of the UWG Newnan Building Fund, several of whom were in attendance Thursday evening.

Before designing the North Wing, more than 800 students who attend classes at UWG Newnan were surveyed, with overarching themes emerging that led the design team – in partnership with Headley Construction – to build out student meeting, studying, and learning spaces, in addition to a flexible classroom.

Kristie Gardner
Kristie Gardner

“This new space is open and inviting,” Gardner said in her student impact remarks. “It allows us more room to study with the use of technology that allows for more independent, quiet study spaces with the capability to connect our devices while studying. The students I have spoken to – who are of all ages and come from all walks of life – are amazed at the thoughtful details incorporated into this remodel, which will have a lasting impact on future generations.”

A few of those “thoughtful details” Gardner referenced include study pods with storage space for students’ belongings, a lactation space and the preservation of notable design elements from the historic Newnan Hospital such as columns and the former operating room lighting.

“We take pride in all of our projects, but when we’re renovating buildings that have the historical significance that this one does, they carry even more weight,” Headley said. “We are so fortunate to have UWG as an instrument in our community because they are always thinking about the next phase. They are not just in our community but are truly plugged in to our community, and we are grateful for their partnership.”

Dr. Brendan Kelly and Georgia Rep. Lynn Smith
Dr. Brendan Kelly and Georgia Rep. Lynn Smith

Following remarks, attendees were invited to tour the new space while enjoying refreshments as part of the spirited event.

UWG Newnan currently offers three undergraduate programs and two graduate degrees entirely at the Newnan Campus, including degrees in nursing, psychology, social and behavioral health, business, and educational leadership. These full programs are offered in addition to many courses across UWG’s academic enterprise that are offered at UWG Newnan.

“The relationship between the city of Newnan and the university is so important to the growth and evolution of our community,” Brady said. “We appreciate the opportunity many of our residents have to pursue higher education right here in their hometown because of UWG Newnan and look forward to many years of continued partnership together.”

To learn more about the Newnan Campus and how you can apply to take courses at UWG Newnan, visit westga.edu/newnan.

photography by Miranda Daniel