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09-29-2009


University of the Cumberlands Dedicates the Ward and Regina Correll Science Complex

 


Somerset businessman and philanthropist, Ward Correll, at the dedication of the Ward and Regina Correll Science Complex on the campus of University of the Cumberlands.

WILLIAMSBURG, Ky. — University of the Cumberlands, on September 21, dedicated its newest classroom building, the Ward and Regina Correll Science Complex, which is named for two generous benefactors who contributed much to help make the building possible. Named in memory of Regina Tartar Correll, who passed away on June 7, 2008, and in honor of Ward Correll, Somerset businessman and philanthropist, the new building was completed in December 2008 and opened its doors for classes at the beginning of the spring 2009 semester.

An elegant replica of Jefferson’s masterpiece, Monticello, the Correll Science Complex is a perfect example of how Cumberlands reveres the past and honors the patriots who dreamed the dream of a United States of America, yet stands firmly facing forward into the 21st century. Inside, the feeling of walking into the 18th century continues, with marble floors leading forward, and graceful, twin staircases rising upward on either side of the domed entrance hall with its mural of constellations. Although period-inspired paint colors and woodwork features can be seen throughout the building, the corridors and staircases quickly leave the past behind. They lead forward and upward to 21st century classrooms, a 134-seat seminar room, laboratories, study rooms and a computer laboratory, all equipped with internet capabilities to provide a state-of-the-art learning environment for today’s math and science students. In addition, the previously existing science building has been updated and renovated to blend with the new architecture, and the two buildings are connected by corridors to complete the science complex, encompassing 78,000 square feet.

 


Students, faculty and staff members, as well as Correll friends and family, attended the dedication of University of the Cumberlands’ new Correll Science Complex, named in memory of Regina and in honor of Ward Correll.

“University of the Cumberlands can boast of a well-earned reputation in the sciences, and this marvelous new facility will allow the students and faculty members who work and learn here to strengthen that reputation as they establish careers and create an impact in the region and, ultimately, the world,” said Dr. Jim Taylor, president.

The dedication ceremony began as a joint convocation in the O. Wayne Rollins Center, which included all the student body, as well as faculty and staff members, Mr. Ward Correll and special guests, including Correll family members and friends. The program featured acknowledgments for Brian Early, principal architect, and David Jackson, contractor of the building, and for Wayne Taylor, class 1972, the artist who painted the mural in the dome, which is a replica of the constellation mural in New York City’s Grand Central Station.

Taylor spoke of the six years since he and Correll had discussed the possibility of building the science complex. He told the audience, “Ward and Regina Correll hold a special place in our lives, hearts, thoughts and in the history of this institution.”

Dr. French Harmon, pastor of Somerset First Baptist Church, where the Corrells have been dedicated, faithful members, delivered the convocation message. Harmon used three words to describe Mrs. Correll: commitment, character and class, and he spoke of Mr. Correll’s philosophy, “Attitude impacts altitude. If you think you can do it, you can.” He wanted the students to know something about these two individuals whose love of God and faith in Jesus Christ had led them to help make this marvelous facility available to current students and to generations of future students.

Following the convocation, the special guests and a number of audience members walked across campus to the entrance hall of the Correll Science Complex for the remainder of the dedication service. There, Taylor spoke directly to Correll, saying, “No edifice ever rose to meet the sky until someone said it should, believed it could and willed it must, and Ward, you did just that.”

Dr. Sarah Ash, assistant professor and chair of the biology department, expressed the gratitude of the faculty members. “Because of the benevolence of Mr. Ward Correll, we now have a facility that rivals any undergraduate science complex in the state .It has provided the possibility of strengthening an already strong program and producing successful graduates for many years to come,” she said.

At most colleges, students pursuing majors in science, technology, pre-engineering or math (STEM) represent 5-7% of the student body, while STEM majors comprise 29% of Cumberlands’ enrolment. Two seniors, Chandra Thomas, of Lexington, and Marie Dennison, Salyersville, thanked Correll for the new facility on behalf of today’s students and the thousands who will follow them. “I know that, as a future physician, the care of my patients will be better, thanks to the learning opportunities you bestowed upon me in the Correll Science Complex,” said Dennison.

The Chamber Choir, directed by Dr. Jeff Smoak provided a stirring rendition of “On Holy Ground.”

Then the ceremony concluded as Dr. Larry Cockrum, academic dean, led the audience in a litany of dedication, to dedicate the Ward and Regina Correll Science Complex to “…the Glory of God and the pursuit of excellence in learning and service."