By Qwynn Watts
On May 18 of this past school year Marian held a groundbreaking ceremony symbolizing the beginning of the long anticipated campus renovation. All classrooms were expected to be emptied by the last day of finals of the 2017-18 school year. Demolition crews started almost immediately after school was out for summer, pulling out ceiling tiles and prepping for the overall renovation.
Throughout the summer, MCL Construction has been hard at work refurbishing the classrooms with new paint, ceilings, carpeting, white boards and all the essentials for the beginning of the school year on Aug. 17. The new entrance, lobby and academic center are also underway with a goal to be finished by the beginning of August 2019.
Even the welcoming face of Marian’s front door has changed. “I will be in Student Services all year,” attendance secretary, Mrs. Judy Turnquist said, “there will be no front office until next summer… I keep thinking about a brand new office. That’s going to be beautiful, so that keeps me going.” For now, the official school entrance is Entrance 9 located behind the statue of Mary and across from the convent.
The academic center is currently in the beginning stages of construction with the complete removal of classrooms 210, 212, 214 and 216. The quad doors and the previous official entrance have also been removed to create room for the multi-level media center which will replace the school’s library and take a modern Marian to new heights. This center will include study rooms and a collaboration space for students to share ideas.
Today, the newly-renovated classrooms are refreshed and uncluttered to enhance the learning environment. New classrooms have also been added, including two new classrooms occupying Etherhaven, which was previously the computer lab, and one in what was previously the teacher lunch room. A new and improved teacher’s lounge replaced old administrative offices, adjacent to Principal Mrs. Susie Sullivan and Assistant to the Principal Mrs. Michelle Delisi’s revitalized offices.
New classrooms and equipment necessitate new rules and enforcement to keep everything looking clean. As far as what to expect this year, Principal Susie Sullivan says, “noise,” construction will continue throughout to ensure the completion of the new additions by the planned deadline. “Classrooms aren’t perfect yet,” Sullivan added, finishing touches are still being put in each classroom throughout the next couple of weeks to make sure all have the fundamental equipment to start the school year off right. “What I need from you (the students),” Sullivan said “is what you always bring: a positive attitude. Your teachers and staff have worked really hard, so tell them how much you love it and clean up after yourselves!”