City council approves Columbia College expansion as enrollment grows

1 week 13 hours 24 minutes ago May 16, 2017 May 16, 2017 Tuesday, May 16 2017 Tuesday, May 16, 2017 7:21:00 PM CDT in News
By: James Packard, KOMU 8 Reporter
loading

COLUMBIA -A move by the city of Columbia Monday night highlighted the stark contrast between enrollment at two of the city's colleges.

Columbia City Council approved Columbia College expansion plans Monday, solidifying the school's growth as enrollment numbers climb.

Columbia College saw a 12.8 percent increase in enrollment last fall, and officials are expecting more growth this fall.

Stephanie Johnson, Columbia College's senior director of admissions, said enrollment has grown to a point where the school is having trouble housing its students. 

"As we were bringing our incoming class in last fall, we were at overload in our residential halls, to the point that we had to turn lounges into four-student suites," she said. "We also had to bunk students with RAs where they normally have single rooms."

The school hopes to add an up-to-6-story building at the center of campus to use as an academic and residence hall. The expansion will likely also include more parking space around campus. 

The new building would offer a modern alternative to the school's aging residence halls. The school's newest dorm was built in 1969 and has seen only modest renovations since then.

"Refresh the paint, some limited new furniture, carpeting," said Cliff Jarvis, the school's executive director of plant & facilities

Jarvis said the school's planned expansion still faces a number of hurdles. 

"There is a schedule of activities that have to occur before we're ready to break ground," he said. "Including additional approvals — internal additional approvals — and then we're gonna have to get some plans put together. There's the fundraising standpoint, solving the budget question."

Jarvis said officials had a general idea of how much they thought the project would cost, but wouldn't say what the figure was. He said the school administration needs to assess how to best adjust the budget for the expansion.

"How do we allocate resources to fund this building?" Jarvis said.

The school's plans are reflective of growth that stands in stark contrast to MU, where budget cuts and job losses are, in part, being blamed on slumping enrollment. 

Johnson said while Columbia College is doing well right now, MU's lower numbers is bad news for everyone.

"If students aren't coming to Columbia, they're not coming to Columbia the town, they're not coming to Columbia the city; and this is College town, USA so it impacts MU, it impacts Columbia College and Stephens as well," she said.

Asked what was working for Columbia College, Johnson said, "Perhaps, you know, recruitment — we are really making our recruiters [go] out in the high schools more. We have done a lot more as far as grassroots, direct recruitment and so — I can't speak to their recruitment model and what they're trying for admissions, but that was our focus this year."

Jarvis speculated that the remaining red tape the plans have to go through could take anywhere from six to 18 months. 

 

More News

Grid
List
PINEVILLE — A southwest Missouri prosecutor has dropped a murder charge in a 2011 death of an Arkansas man, but... More >>
13 minutes ago May 24, 2017 May 24, 2017 Wednesday, May 24 2017 Wednesday, May 24, 2017 8:32:45 AM CDT in News
KANSAS CITY — A Kansas City man is charged with shooting into a south Kansas City church, injuring a church... More >>
2 hours ago May 24, 2017 May 24, 2017 Wednesday, May 24 2017 Wednesday, May 24, 2017 6:32:57 AM CDT in News
JEFFERSON CITY — A Missouri House committee has endorsed a bill authorizing discounted electric rates for steel and aluminum production... More >>
3 hours ago May 24, 2017 May 24, 2017 Wednesday, May 24 2017 Wednesday, May 24, 2017 4:57:10 AM CDT in News
JEFFERSON CITY - Jefferson City police were investigating a Tuesday evening shots fired incident that left a man with an... More >>
9 hours ago May 23, 2017 May 23, 2017 Tuesday, May 23 2017 Tuesday, May 23, 2017 11:10:00 PM CDT in News
COLUMBIA - After President Trump's executive order that put a temporary hold on people from certain countries entering the United... More >>
10 hours ago May 23, 2017 May 23, 2017 Tuesday, May 23 2017 Tuesday, May 23, 2017 9:52:00 PM CDT in Target 8
ST. CHARLES - The second day of a trial in the death of Missouri State Trooper James Bava centered around... More >>
11 hours ago May 23, 2017 May 23, 2017 Tuesday, May 23 2017 Tuesday, May 23, 2017 9:36:00 PM CDT in News
COLUMBIA - The University of Missouri System Board of Curators voted Tuesday afternoon to increase tuition at all four UM... More >>
13 hours ago May 23, 2017 May 23, 2017 Tuesday, May 23 2017 Tuesday, May 23, 2017 7:33:00 PM CDT in News
JEFFERSON CITY - Lincoln University was expected to announce its interim president on Thursday. The university's board of curators... More >>
14 hours ago May 23, 2017 May 23, 2017 Tuesday, May 23 2017 Tuesday, May 23, 2017 6:37:00 PM CDT in News
JEFFERSON CITY - As lawmakers met in special session Tuesday, Gov. Eric Greitens spoke at a rally of Missourians wanting... More >>
14 hours ago May 23, 2017 May 23, 2017 Tuesday, May 23 2017 Tuesday, May 23, 2017 6:18:00 PM CDT in News
COLUMBIA - Family and friends of Cameron Scott Caruthers spoke to KOMU 8 News over the telephone Tuesday afternoon. ... More >>
15 hours ago May 23, 2017 May 23, 2017 Tuesday, May 23 2017 Tuesday, May 23, 2017 5:28:00 PM CDT in News
COLUMBIA - Columbia Public Schools sent home a letter to parents Tuesday addressing rumors about possible threats. CPS Superintendent... More >>
15 hours ago May 23, 2017 May 23, 2017 Tuesday, May 23 2017 Tuesday, May 23, 2017 4:56:00 PM CDT in News
COLUMBIA - A restaurant was closed Tuesday after crews found high levels of natural gas. Columbia fire crews responded... More >>
16 hours ago May 23, 2017 May 23, 2017 Tuesday, May 23 2017 Tuesday, May 23, 2017 4:38:00 PM CDT in News
JEFFERSON CITY - Jefferson City will be seeing new bike racks installed around town. The goal is to make... More >>
16 hours ago May 23, 2017 May 23, 2017 Tuesday, May 23 2017 Tuesday, May 23, 2017 4:32:00 PM CDT in News
KANSAS CITY (AP) — Dashcam video shows that a University of Missouri-Kansas City student seemed confused when she was stopped... More >>
16 hours ago May 23, 2017 May 23, 2017 Tuesday, May 23 2017 Tuesday, May 23, 2017 4:01:00 PM CDT in News
COLUMBIA - The man shot Monday on Dawn Ridge Road has died and robbery does not appear to be a... More >>
17 hours ago May 23, 2017 May 23, 2017 Tuesday, May 23 2017 Tuesday, May 23, 2017 3:25:00 PM CDT in News
COLUMBIA - A Columbia woman has pleaded guilty to murder and armed criminal action in the death of a man... More >>
17 hours ago May 23, 2017 May 23, 2017 Tuesday, May 23 2017 Tuesday, May 23, 2017 3:03:00 PM CDT in News
COLUMBIA - The Central Missouri Humane Society has brought in over 200 animals so far this year and is looking... More >>
18 hours ago May 23, 2017 May 23, 2017 Tuesday, May 23 2017 Tuesday, May 23, 2017 2:10:00 PM CDT in News
KANSAS CITY (AP) — University of Missouri-Kansas City Chancellor Leo Morton plans to retire at the end of the next... More >>
19 hours ago May 23, 2017 May 23, 2017 Tuesday, May 23 2017 Tuesday, May 23, 2017 1:08:28 PM CDT in News
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 52°
9am 54°
10am 57°
11am 59°
12pm 60°

Select a station to view its upcoming schedule:

Coming Up Next

7:00a
Today
11:00a
Rachael Ray
12:00p
KOMU 8 News @ Noon
8:00a
The Steve Wilkos Show
9:00a
The Steve Wilkos Show
10:00a
Jerry Springer

Tonight's Schedule

7:00p
Law & Order: Special Victims Unit
8:00p
Law & Order: Special Victims Unit
7:00p
Arrow
8:00p
The 100
9:00p
KOMU 8 News @ Nine on The CW
9:30p
Seinfeld