By ROGER SCHNEIDER
THE GOSHEN NEWS
GOSHEN — Returning students will notice a few changes on campus after they unpack their bags and fill their fridges.
According to public relations director Jodi Beyeler, the former college gymnasium in the Union building has been converted into offices. Housed there now are the Center for International Teaching and Learning, the Study Service Term office and Multicultural Affairs office.
“That is all a new space we are calling the Center for Intercultural and International Education,” Beyeler said.
Half of the gym still exists, Beyeler said, but it will be utilized in a future project.
Other changes in the Union include an expanded lounge for commuter students; the Welcome Center has been moved to a new location; there’s new restrooms; and some of the hallways have been reconfigured.
Work was also done at the library. Beyeler said a new geothermal heating and cooling system was installed there. And the rec center has had some renovations ahead of the swimming pool’s closure at the end of the month.
With all students being given iPads this year, the curriculum has been adjusted a bit to accommodate that technology, according to Beyeler.
She said GC staff held a retreat last week to review those changes and she found the changes fascinating.
“It’s really about pulling together different disciplines,” she said. An example is that social studies courses and biology courses will meld the issue of race into their curriculums. The biology aspect will discuss the science of race and the social studies courses will look at race relations. And both will use the iPads as a platform for coursework.
Every college has a group of general studies courses that students must take before embarking on their majors and minors. At GC those courses have been reconfigured and are called “The Goshen Core,” Beyeler said.
She said the Goshen Core will have a multicultural aspect.
The iPads will also allow students to stockpile an electronic record of their work in college.
“Students will be keeping an electronic portfolio throughout their career so they can show the highlights of their work and how they are learning and progressing,” Beyeler said.
“That’s the beauty of it. When you are done, this is something you will be able to take with you and show employers ‘This is what I have done in college.’ It is unique compared to some other colleges.”
During the staff retreat the college employees were enjoying learning how the iPads would be incorporated into the many areas of study, Beyeler said.
“Most of us were saying ‘we want to go back to college.’ This looks so interesting.”