By Whitney Marcus, Staff Writer
February 5, 2011 marked quite a surprising and exciting day for Young Harris College freshman Hailey Silvey, a communication major from the city of Young Harris. Her article, “Campus Hauntings” in the Halloween edition of the Enotah Echoes newspaper landed Silvey the awards of first place in “Best Entertainment Feature” and third place in “Best Feature.” Silvey was the only staff member of the Enotah Echoes to receive awards from the GCPA.
According to Silvey, she didn’t expect her article to win anything. But at the GCPA convention on February 5, she was overwhelmed to find herself clenching two certificates with her name, the category of her award and the position she placed.
Surrounded by students of every college that had entered the contest, Silvey was nothing less than ecstatic at this banquet ceremony.
Silvey said, “I was surprised that I received the awards, only because I really didn’t think that the article itself was phenomenal enough to receive recognition out of every four-year college in the state.”
Silvey enjoys writing features and campus life articles for the Enotah Echoes newpspaer.
“They’re so cheerful and happy,” says Silvey, “they’re things that aren’t really important, but people find interesting.”
YHC’s Enotah Echoes competed in the four-year college division, where the staff submitted photos, articles and design concepts for the contest. The awards are given out by the Georgia College Press Association or GCPA to every two and four-year college in the state, excluding the University of Georgia. The GCPA is an organization dedicated to assisting in the betterment of Georgia collegiate journalism and providing a mutual flow of information between its member colleges. Other recipients in Silvey’s division were from Savanna College of Art and Design and Berry College.
By Erin Grable, News Editor
Last week, Young Harris College received the approval from the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools or SACS. This will take the college from nine baccalaureate programs to a total of 13 programs and three post-baccalaureate certification programs.
According to Joe Anderson the Chair of the Math Department, YHC already has a four-year mathematics program but is anticipating approval from the Georgia Professional Standards Commission, PSC for the post-math education certification program.
“With the post-major students will be able to come back after four years at YHC for an additional year and obtain an education certificate for teaching,” said Anderson. “After completing the Bachelor of Science in mathematics, students can come back for an additional year and obtain a certification in mathematics education.”
“My goal is to have the faculty at big universities like the University of Georgia and Georgia Tech to want their children to go to their school for their Masters and Ph.D., but come to Young Harris for their undergrad.”
Six to seven YHC students on campus are interested in being math majors and hopefully in the next few years there will be as many as 20 to 30.
“I think the additional math programs are a great thing. Now for those looking to pursue a major or minor in math will be able to,” said Mitch Williams, a math major from Covington. “It will also give those who intend to major in math a chance to stay here for four years.”
Currently, there are three full-time faculty in the math department, one part-time and two adjunct professors; but over the next two years the college is working to hire two new full-time assistant professors.
“We will help you get wherever you want to go, whether it is continuing to graduate school, teaching or starting a non-teaching career,” said Anderson.
According to Anderson with the approval of the mathematics education certification program it will not only be beneficial to students but to the local community as well, because we will be producing teachers that can help with teacher shortages.
Anderson went on to say that in the future the math department will expand to offer tutoring programs for local school systems. This will provide future teachers with exposure to working with middle and high school students.
At this time YHC does not have any programs in the area mainly because the program is new, but students will have the ability to get out in the community.
“We want to challenge students, but let them know that math is accessible, said Anderson. “You can do this, and we are here to help you. It is going to take a lot of work, and it is going to be hard; but we are going to have great undergrad students who can go anywhere.”
By Erin Grable, Staff Writer
With the cost of college tuition on the rise, some people have questioned whether the first two years of college is worth the cost or a waste of time. An article from USA Today helped shed some light on this pressing concern among college students and their parents.
According to an article from Yahoo Shine website, colleges charge as much as $50,000 per year. With an investment this large, the thought that the first two years could teach students “next-to-nothing” may bring students and parents to rethink their decision about college.
An article from USA Today revealed from a new report that practically half of the nation’s undergraduates in their first two years of college do not display any improvements in learning. The explanation of these findings falls back on the colleges themselves for only offering academics as an option.
The report is based on the book Academically Adrift: Limited Learning on College Campuses, by lead author Richard Arum, a New York University professor.
The discoveries are based off of the following: transcripts and surveys of more than 3,000 full-time traditional-age students on 29 campuses nationwide, along with their results on the Collegiate Learning Assessment or CLA. The CLA is a standardized test that gauges students’ critical thinking, analytic reasoning and writing skills.
In this study, it was discovered that professors are more concerned with their own research as an instructor rather than teaching their students.
The results reveal that “45% of students showed no significant gains in learning” after two years in college. After four years, 36% of students “showed little change.” Also, “students also spent 50% less time studying compared with students a few decades ago, the research shows.”
Other factors of research show that truth behind the numbers of students who do study, do not study and those who do not study enough.
In the article, a reported “35% of students report spending five or fewer hours per week studying alone.” However, regardless of the “ever-growing emphasis” on partner projects and study groups the students that study with groups have a tendency to have poorer gains in learning.
50% said they never took a class in a typical semester where they wrote more than 20 pages; 32% never took a course in a typical semester where they read more than 40 pages per week.
The article tells that 50% of students admitted they never took a class “in a typical semester” that required them to write more than 20 pages in a single semester. Also, 32% of students never took a class in a “typical semester” where they read more than 40 pages per week in a single semester.
“These are really kind of shocking, disturbing numbers, said Arum, a New York University professor and author. “Students are able to navigate through the system quite well with little effort.”
The Department of Education and Congress have searched for ways to hold colleges and universities responsible for student learning, but researchers state that “federal intervention would be counterproductive.”
According to the article, the Department of Education and Congress have searched for ways to hold colleges and universities responsible for student learning. However, researchers state that “federal intervention would be counterproductive.”
With Young Harris College having a long tradition as a two-year school, the first two years have typically been especially important to students. To compare the article results to YHC, 100 people were asked “do you think the first two years of college are pointless?”
According to the poll results of various YHC students on campus, 79% percent of students do not believe that the first two years of college are pointless and show small gains.
“The first two years are a part of the transition from high school and learning new responsibilities, said Matt Wilmer a sophomore from Conyers. “They are about finding your niche on campus and learning how to balance social life and academics.”
The majority of the students who answered no still had the same response that it is all a learning experience and we have to do it. Although some students thought otherwise.
“I feel like we have already taken a lot of these core classes in high school, said Hayden Verner a freshman from Athens. “A lot [of classes] do not even go towards students specific majors.”
One student surveyed for the poll, believed that the responsibility lies within the student, not the institution.
“The reason that some people may think the first two years of college are pointless is because they do not take it seriously, said sophomore Jordan Rudd from Buford. “The college is responsible for student learning but it is our responsibility to do what we will with it.”
By Erin Grable, Staff Writer
Over the Christmas break, Young Harris College became the owner of a nearby property across from campus. According to an e-mail from Young Harris President Cathy Cox, the property includes the Young Harris motel, the adjoining locally-owned restaurant The Bread of Life and the two-story building that was previously a real estate office.
YHC has been discussing the purchase since last fall, when a local bank began procedures to foreclosure on the properties; but the foreclosure was not completed until December 31 of last year.
According to Denise Cook, the director of Communications and Marketing at YHC, the purchase of this property is beneficial to YHC’s long-term plans for growth as a four-year college.
“I am glad the college bought it hopefully the turnover will bring more business,” said Elizabeth Eller, owner of The Bread of Life restaurant. “[Outsiders] were looking at buying it now it will stay local.”
The motel and office buildings are vacant, but the restaurant is still being operated by the Eller family from the city of Young Harris. Although the YHC owns the land, their restaurant will remain open and the Eller family will operate it.
YHC has made plans to improve the appearance of the restaurant by providing a new sign for the restaurant.
“Young Harris is better suited to update the appearance, and it will be important what it looks like to the college,” said Eller. “The college is providing a new sign for the restaurant with lighting, and they are going to repair the ground. We are just waiting on the weather.”
In a META e-mail sent to all faculty over Christmas break, Cox mentioned that plans for the motel property have not been finalized, but many have been discussed. These include using the property as student housing, depending on if the enrollment rises higher than expected for the fall semester. If this option is finalized, then students could reside for a year in the motel if the enrollment exceeds expectations for next fall.
“I would want to live in the motel, because even though it is just across the road it is more off campus,” said junior Mallory Holland from Woodstock.
Other students like junior Ben Garner from Dahlonega mentioned that he would consider staying at the motel if the pool was available to students, since there was no longer a pool on campus.
Despite outside appearances, Cox was quick to mention that the motel is “quite appealing” on the inside.
Another alternative for the space applies to YHC faculty and staff. The college is expanding, and it will need additional office space for next fall. The motel has been discussed as a potential area for office space or academic programs.
“We definitely will need more office space, if the plan to tear down the old recreational center goes through,” said Diane Bauman, an instructor of mathematics at YHC.
According to Cook, YHC has considered using the two-story building as office space for the Bonner Leaders program and the Appalachian Studies program; however, no final plans have been made for any of these properties.
Cox pointed out that this purchase did not include the buildings behind the two-story office building that are “falling into the ground.” Those buildings are still owned by the initial property owner.
Also, the purchase does not include the rundown white buildings with broken windows at the intersection of Main and Murphy Street at the stop light behind the Brodi t-shirt business. That building was recently purchased by Barry Brown, the head cross country coach and owner of the Brodi.
“No final decisions have been made at this time, but a decision will be made this spring regarding the short-term and long-term use of the property,” said Cook. “This ownership provides Young Harris College with flexibility as administration examines the options for managing the exciting growth the college is experiencing as a four-year college.”
Every year on Martin Luther King Jr. Day students look forward to not going to school, some businesses close, and the working people enjoy a day off, but how much do students really know about the man behind this holiday?
100 students on campus at YHC were asked the question, “Do you know where Martin Luther King Jr’s famous speech ‘I Have a Dream’ took place.” The results of the survey revealed that 62 percent of YHC students knew the location of the speech, with the remaining 38 percent not knowing where the speech took place.
Several students like freshman Jordan Meeks knew the location from watching the movie Forest Gump. Other students like junior Stacy Kammer remember the location from learning about it in high school. The majority of the students who answered yes knew in detail the precise moment and location of the speech.
This holiday is the celebration of the birth of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. on Jan. 15, 1929.
On this day we commemorate Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. for his great dream to unite this nation we live in through peace and understanding. His dream came true. Through his and other activists’ work, Americans of all colors are able to experience freedom; because of this, MLK day is an important holiday for all Americans.
MLK Jr. was assassinated on April 4, 1968, and his grave has been turned into a national historic site in his hometown Atlanta.
The 2011 celebration of this monumental day is celebrated on the 17th of January in all 50 states of American. The holiday is also celebrated in over 100 countries around the world. This year’s commemoration will mark the 82nd birthday of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and the 25th anniversary of its national honor.
According to The King Center’s website, MLK’s wife Coretta Scott King said, “the Martin Luther King, Jr. Holiday celebrates the life and legacy of a man who brought hope and healing to America.”
This holiday can now be found labeled on all purchased calendars, movies and books to this moment of history; however, people still remain unaware of the background of the speech that took place on this day.
This day is recognized as a national holiday, but it has not always been that way. In November of 1983, President Reagan signed a bill initiating this day as a holiday in January 1986. During the time of the first celebration only Washington D.C. and 27 states honored this day. For example, it was not until 1992 that the state of Arizona recognized this day as a holiday. Arizona was not the only state to reject the holiday. Up until the year 2000 South Carolina was the last state that recognized MLK day as a paid holiday.
According to the MLK Online website, his speech “I Have a Dream” is considered the“greatest demonstration for freedom in the history of our nation.”
It is on this day we honor Martin Luther King for his work toward nonviolent social change in not only America but across the world. Martin Luther King Jr. made history because of his shaping experiences in his hometown of Atlanta, his deep family origins in the African-American Baptist church, his theological studies, his involvement in religious and political leadership and because of his far-reaching contacts in the social justice movement during this time period. Each of these aspects led him to be the great and inspirational leader people know and appreciate still today.
“Ever since kindergarten I have learned about Martin Luther King Jr.’s “I Have a Dream” speech and one of the things I learned was that it was given in the top section of steps in front of the Lincoln Memorial. That fact has always stuck in my mind,” said Junior Cody Craft.
According to the MLK Online website, we must celebrate this day as ”A Day on Not a Day Off” and commemorate King’s inspiring words, “We must work unceasingly to uplift this nation that we love to a higher destiny, to a higher plateau of compassion, to a more noble expression of humanness” -Dr Martin Luther King Jr.
By Erin Grable, Staff Writer and Kathleen Layton, Editor-in-Chief
In early October, three YHC students were caught by campus police lurking between Maxwell Math and Science Building and the old gynmasium dressed in black and in possession of set of campus master keys. The incident led to one arrest, the exposure of a secret campus society and a revisitation of campus policy regarding student access to keys.
In the early hours of Friday, Oct. 1, students David McEwen and Tory Gravitt were wearing dark-colored clothing when they were approached by YHC police officer Tommy Shook. According to police reports, both students ran from Shook and were later found near the baseball fields by a deputy of Towns County Sheriff’s Office. McEwen and Gravitt were brought to the police station for questioning where they were joined by a third YHC student, Austin Freeman. All three claimed to be “exploring the campus” using a set of master keys that were provided to them through their membership in a secret organization called Delta Lambda, or “Down-Low.” McEwen was arrested, and the other two students were detained as additional suspects.
Once questioned, the trio revealed that as members of Delta Lambda they would sneak around buildings late at night using Delta Lambda’s set of master keys. These keys were passed down year to year. The keys were originally obtained from founding members Cody Morgan and Alan Guilfoyle. After questioning, Freeman handed over the keys to YHC police as well as a backpack containing books with information on other campus organizations.
According to Freeman, all three students were provided the opportunity to negotiate their punishment alongside YHC police and administration as a part of the appeals process. The allowance of an appeal is a common part of the disciplinary procedures at YHC.
“The cops were reasonable. All students who get in trouble on campus get an appeal, and we decided that it would be beneficial for us as students to be examples to other students rather than [for] them kick us out [of school],” said McEwen, a Spanish major from Conyers.
Eventually, it was decided that the three would individually serve 70 hours of community service, pay a fine of $300 dollars each, develop a program to return any additional master keys back to YHC administration and remain under a strict disciplinary program until they graduate.
In hindsight, McEwen, Gravitt and Freeman each have regrets about the incident.
“We ran because we looked sketchy in all black,” said McEwen. “We were scared. We were idiots. We knew it was wrong, because we had the keys.”
Agreeing with McEwen’s sentiments, Gravitt, a theatre major from Cumming, commented, “I thought my future was done for and that I was going to jail. I thought I was going to get kicked out of school—my whole future flashed before my eyes.”
Gravitt went on to say, “ever since that night, even though I didn’t get kicked out of school and it didn’t go on my criminal record, my life has still changed; because, I will be suffering from these consequences for a long time.”
Needless to say, each student has come to realize the gravity of their actions.
“Looking back I realize what could have happened,” said Freeman, a theatre major from Hart County. “Tori or David could have been shot because they ran. I thought of a range of things; but, since we were cooperative, the police decided to keep only the school involved. I thought I could go to prison or be suspended.”
Dr. Ron Ingle, the executive vice president and provost at YHC. Ingle said, “I trust that they’ve learned from this experience. It’s what we do here. Hopefully, they’ve learned something and make some changes to [their] decision making.”
Along with hoping that the lesson is learned, Ingle noted that the school will not press charges.
Ingle said, “as long as they follow their requirements it’s a done deal” in reference to their disciplinary requirements.
Though the incident occurred over a month ago, the repercussions are still being felt across campus. Ingle mentioned plans for a key policy to be established in the future.
“I’m planning on implementing a key policy. I understand that there are keys out there. I plan on having a key amnesty period, where there will be no repercussions for [having keys], so long as those keys are returned,” Ingle said.
Ingle stressed the difficulty of determining which students have the authority to have keys and how that approval should be reached.
While this incident posed a problem for administration, Rouseline Emmanuel, director of campus activities, said that she had no knowledge of the situation because “[Delta Lambda] is not a recognized organization [by YHC].”
Emmanuel’s office only deals with issues involving YHC-sanctioned student organizations.
Ingle believed that this issue was bigger than previously believed, but did not feel that notifying faculty about the event was an acceptable way to approach the issue.
Though Ingle was surprised by the gravity of the issue, Dr. Joy Goldsmith, assistant professor of communication and department chair, commented that she was not surprised that students have access from previous years. However, Goldsmith acknowledged that students having access to confidential materials is worrisome and could become a big danger.
By Erin Grable, Staff Writer
Many returning students have noticed an apparent increase in police officers on campus at Young Harris College. Students feel like the police on campus and in the surrounding counties are cracking down, resulting in more YHC students that are getting in trouble this year as compared to last year.
“This year there is definitely more security on campus than there was last year. The police seem to be everywhere,” said Bo Edgemon a sophomore media communication major from Kennesaw. “The school seems to be stricter. They look for parties a lot more this year.”
However, the Chief of the Police Department on campus at YHC, Chief Ken Henderson, assures us that it is nothing of that sort. According to Henderson, the fact that police are more visible on campus has nothing to do with campus police having stricter standards of enforcement.
“Winship always feels so safe with the cops watching our every single move,” said anonymous members of the Winship residence hall.
According to Henderson, there have maybe been four or five cases of possession of alcohol by a minor on campus, or MIPs. He also stated that these MIP citations have been given, but the number is a very small amount.
The campus police are putting more time and energy in the area of issuing parking tickets. As far as crime, there is not really an issue according to Henderson.
“As painful as it is to give tickets, it is hard not to because of the parking issue,” said Henderson. “We have adequate parking, but it is hard to get the students to park where they are supposed to park. It may be inconvenient parking,
but students can always call for a ride from the cadets.”
The police department on campus has replaced a couple of officers who were here last year. These police officers decided to leave for other job opportunities; therefore, more officers had to be added to replace the existing officers’ positions. The campus police also needed to hire more part-time officers, because so many events have been added to campus, which called for additional coverage.
“The visibility of cops on campus is more noticeable this year because of the increase in events on campus, like more sports events” said Henderson. “Coverage is better this year.”
Police Chief Henderson also explained that the 24-hour presence of YHC police has also contributed to the perceived increase in visibility.
To help with the coverage YHC has begun a student cadet program through the campus police department. The program is designed to help the police department assist students on campus. The student police cadets are there to help the police department by patrolling the campus alongside an officer, assisting students to their destinations who come in during the late hours and by driving students to class on the police department’s golf cart.
Some of the students that choose to be a part of the cadet program may have an interest in law enforcement or the study of law, though this is not always the case.
According to Police Chief Henderson, the cadet program is a great opportunity for the students involved to see what law enforcement is really about.
“Our goal is to serve the students, college and the community, said Henderson. “We hope the students see that we are here to help them. We do not want to be seen as the enemy.”
When asked about how increased police coverage on campus has affected student life, the Office of Student Development did not return comments.
By Erin Grable, Staff Writer
The campus of Young Harris College has been chosen as the site for the newest edition to the Winshape Camps program funded by Chick-fil-A. But, many YHC students and faculty members are wondering if the Winshape camp will interfere with summer school at YHC.
“We are free to operate our summer school and any other programs we choose to operate,” said Cathy Cox, president of Young Harris College.
According to Cox, the summer school program in 2011 will continue as normal. Winshape Camps does not want exclusive access to the campus. They discussed ways in which the college and camp program can create multiple uses of the various facilities that already exist.
The campus will operate as usual during the summer, the camp will only occupy the Enotah Residence Hall, therefore no interference with YHC summer school or any other summer programs will occur.
According to Cox, YHC is studying alternatives to offer additional online or hybrid classes during the summer, so that YHC students who wish to take classes can remain at home if they prefer.
Also, YHC has made arrangements with Winshape to use the auditoriums on campus in multiple ways for YHC’s use and for other visiting camps’ use. However, as of now, there are not any summer theatre programs that would need to be worked around.
“I think that it is fantastic that Winshape Camps is coming to Young Harris and that they want to use our auditoriums for a lot of reasons,” said Eddie Collins, chair of theatre at YHC.
“The more people that come to the campus will see how beautiful it is and what life is like here. We are hoping in the future to tie the theatre department into the camps,” Collins said.
The camps will begin in June 2011 and are scheduled for June 5-10, June 12-17, June 19-24 and June 26-July 1. The program is available for girls in the 1st grade through the 6th. The girls will be staying in the newest residence hall, Enotah Hall.
According to Cox, the cost of the camp has not been determined. The cost of the camp will remain a mystery until after the first of the year when the Winshape Camp registration process is completed. The college typically charges a per day fee of $28 to $34 for every camper. The per camper fee depends on what facilities the camp has access to, and most camps make separate arrangements for food charges with the college’s food service provider.
Many students and faculty question the future status of the campus during the summer, and wonder if YHC will undergo any changes for the arrival of the camp. According to Cox, the campus will not see any changes; the only difference will be that there will be more young girls around. The only other difference will concern the housekeeping staff, who will need to continue to deep clean the Enotah Residence Hall during the summer.
According to Judy Gibson and Gwen Denton, two members of YHC’s housekeeping staff, since the campers will be residing in the Enotah Residence Hall, which takes longer to clean than the other dorms because of the way the floors need to be cleaned, this change will increase the workload for the housekeeping staff. On top of the work schedule for the other residence halls on campus, the staff will be required to also thoroughly clean Enotah Hall for the camps.
“Winshape will make a difference in our work schedules. It will be interfering with our work because we will have to deep clean everything again after each camp,” said Denton. “It is a lot of work and the pay is the same. We do not receive extra pay.”
Not only does the college benefit from being chosen as the site for Winshape Camps, but the students of YHC benefit as well. According to Cox, the leaders of WinShape Camps would like to hire YHC students to staff the camps. A number of YHC students attended Winshape Camps as children, so now they have the ability to work at the camp they grew up around.
“All YHC students will ultimately benefit from the camps, though, because any revenue that is generated from the camps will help to keep tuition costs lower and enable YHC to offer strong scholarships to our regular students,” said Cox. “If we can fill rooms on campus during a summer that otherwise would be empty we are earning ‘auxiliary’ income which helps to pay the bills for the college’s overall operation–and that reduces the amount we have to cover with tuition and contributions.”
According to Cox, once the completion of the new student recreation and fitness center was accomplished, the decision was made by the camp and conference coordinator and the college’s administrators to pursue more summer camp opportunities for YHC.
However, according to Cox any input that students or faculty have about decision to incorporate more summer camps on campus is welcome. The decision conveniently worked out because Winshape Camps was looking to expand their program and Camp Conference Coordinator Brett Beazley was able to coordinate all the arrangements for the summer camp to expand to YHC’s campus.
Erin Grable, Staff Writer
According to the results from the Union County primary election on July 20, in Union County, Blairsville is no longer a dry county. However, because alcohol has yet to be served in restaurants or sold in stores, there have been several discrepancies as to whether or not the law has actually been passed or if it is a rumor.
The law has been passed, meaning alcohol can be distributed and purchased in Union County; however, according to a previous article about alcohol regulations, Union County Commissioner Lamar Paris mentions that even though the law has passed, the buying and selling of alcohol will be inactive until an ordinance is approved.
As of last Thursday, September 21, the new alcohol ordinance was approved.
“The ordinance is approved. Signed, sealed and delivered,” Paris said.
According to Paris, they have issued application packets to any person who has come by the office that is seeking the regulation of alcohol in their business. The stores and restaurants that plan on having alcohol as a product for consumers are: Ingles, the Cycle Resort at Copperhead LLC, Booger Hollow Convenience Store, Mikes Seafood and Market Grill and Wildcat Store in Suches. These businesses have placed ads in the North Georgia News and are awaiting their licenses.
“I lose business to other restaurants that do serve alcohol, especially in the winter time,” said Mike Gurlby from Mikes Seafood and Market Grill. “I am only selling beer because the fees are so high.”
According to Paris, applications will be revised as they come in by the selected five-member Alcohol Board. The members include Robert Head Jr., Reid Dyer (YHC Alumni), Billie Young (works at YHC), Marcus Tuschel and Mike Prive.
After all paper work is done and fees are paid, the examination course will begin. As soon as the pending businesses receive a county or city license it will take around 30 days before the license is valid, because the State Revenue Department must approve it. The anticipated time ranges from a few days to a week or two, but once the completed application and fees are in, it should not surpass two weeks. If all the information is present and there are not any problems with the businesses, such as back taxes, then the businesses will be ‘in business’ with alcohol.
According to Lori Mccreadie, a server at Mikes Seafood, they will be selling beer once they receive approval, which should be in about three weeks.
Locals and tourists alike will have the ability to purchase wine, liquor and beer in Union County, once the businesses receive their license and are authorized to distribute.
“It will take some time, but the ability to distribute alcohol will help the community tremendously as a whole in this economy,” Gurlby said.
By Erin Grable, Staff Writer
Along with the change of the new zoning district on campus here at Young Harris, the college wishes to expand its housing facilities further. There has been talk of creating new residence housing for students anticipating to live on the campus, because of the increase in enrollment. Unsure of where to build, what to tear down or put up, the college remains undecided on the final decision but does anticipate seeking new housing.
“YHC is growing at a rapid pace and expects to have more than 900 students enrolled in 2011-12 – some 100 more than we have this year. Accordingly, we absolutely must add additional student housing in order to grow at the rate we’d like to grow,” said Cathy Cox, president of Young Harris College.
Cox explained that as of right now the college provides 716 available beds for students and 657 of them are already assigned. 31 single rooms are set aside for RAs and 21 single rooms for any students willing to pay for them, that only leaves seven available beds for students entering next fall. Even with the seniors graduating next spring, and some students unfortunately transferring, the college will endure housing shortage unless they add new housing to the campus.
Winship Hall will be taken down or renovated during the summer of 2011 for the construction of the new campus center, further diminishing the number of available beds on campus.
“We know we need more housing and we have several options, but we are still very early in the process of identifying the best option,” said Susan Rogers, vice president of student development.
According to Rogers, there are several options for the expanding of housing preferences for students at Young Harris: option one being that the college seeks purchasing the apartments; option two being to bring back the arrangement of trailers on campus for housing; option three being renovating existing rooms on campus for additional beds. Finally option four being a planned village-style housing project, which is currently in the design phase.
The college has considered expanding to the Enotah Village apartments located across the street from the campus. These apartments house only residents with disabilities or residents that receive low income.
According to Cox, the college considered purchasing Enotah Village because they were interested in the apartment living-style they provided and they liked that it is located near the campus.
The master plan developed in 2008 for the campus, expects to seek apartment style housing with full kitchen so that students wanting to live in these apartments can begin learning to live independently in the privacy of their own apartment. The college wants to offer multiple housing options so that students will be more comfortable.
“We’ve spent months trying to see if the college could work past the various restrictions, but the sale continues to look less and less viable,” Cox said. “Adding ‘real’ apartments to our housing mix has been a part of our plans for some time whether we bought an existing apartment complex or built our own apartment style units.”
Cox explained that the Board of Trustees approached the developers of the Enotah Village living facility to see if they were willing to sell the apartments.
However, the purchase of the village is not possible at this time, because the facility is designed for individuals who receive low or moderate income and the apartment falls under the agreement to not be purchased until 20 years after being built.
“The college did approach us, but there is no agreement in place,” said a reliable source affiliated with Enotah Village.
According to a resident of Enotah Village who wished to not be named, many residents feel that if the college purchased the apartments it would be a violation of the Americans with Disabilities Act and the Fair Housing Act.
The resident claimed that as many as 20 families affected by this disability would be out on the street with no place to go.
However, a reliable source affiliated with Enotah Village assured that the residents would be protected; they would not lose their housing rights. There would probably be another facility that would accommodate the Enotah Village apartments.
Just in case, residents at the Enotah Village apartments received access to paperwork with information concerning the HUD Office of Fair Housing if they felt the need to file any complaints for the inquiry of the college’s expanding into their housing facility.
According to Cox, the developer of Enotah Village was interested in building a new housing location to fill the area’s need for affordable accommodation if they were able to work out the complicated details.
“If there was an agreement in place it would be a complicated, lengthy, unwinding process,” said a reliable source affiliated with the Enotah Village apartments. “Some people have a problem with change, but it is often a good. It can be the benefit of all.”
Another option exists if the college is not able to purchase Enotah Village. According to Cox, last spring the Board of Trustees contacted the administrators of the college to see about beginning an apartment-style housing design for the college. The process for the design does not have a set date, but the apartments will be located on Maple Street, and it will be offered to upperclassmen first.
“A number of decisions will have to be made in the coming month to ultimately decide which path we’ll follow,” Cox said. “But any way you look at it, we are simply going to have to have additional student housing next fall. That’s a good problem to have.”