The staff editorial is the majority opinion of the editorial board of The Murray State News.
The recent Board of Regents decision to raze Ordway Hall is raising more questions than buildings. How can University buildings be neglected for so long? And how do we keep this from happening to many of our other buildings on campus?
This issue may not seem important to a growing campus full of new facilities. But these buildings are a vital part of the history and culture of the University. Around campus students use a diverse amount of structures for their studies and experiences throughout their college career.
Across the country colleges and universities proudly show off their prestige through their aging infrastructure. How this opportunity crept past our own school is unknown.
We can no longer stand by while the foundations of our university fall apart before our very eyes.
The only people who can keep other historical buildings from reaching this point are the ones we look at in the mirror.
It is the job of all students, faculty, staff and administrators to report any problems discovered in buildings across campus.
Students may not recognize that many of the buildings they are using are original to campus. These include Wilson Hall and Wrather Auditorium. No matter how beautiful our new buildings, with their red bricks and white columns, we cannot pretend the present is the past.
Fooling ourselves only leads to more Ordways and more loss of an important history to this campus and the entire region.
President Randy Dunn said the issue is not the lack of wanting to preserve these buildings but a lack of funds.
“And the question becomes how long can we live with Ordway until we would be able to either secure enough donations or gather enough money from other sources to renovate it,” Dunn said. “And I think the answer to that question, as everybody looked at it, would likely be many years.”
Dunn said Ordway should be an example of how not to take care of our campus.
“The condition that Ordway deteriorated to did not happen just over a few years,” Dunn said. “That was an outcome years and years in the making. I do think it provides an object lesson on the fact we have to be good stewards of the buildings that we have.”
A late lesson learned is better than nothing learned at all. The best course of action now is in moving forward with a plan to save the many other neglected buildings on our wonderful campus. If not for ourselves, then for those who will use this campus long after us. Let us all hope this is the case and in the future we, as a University, do a better job.