This semester, Murray State accounting students have their own suite on campus to relax between classes, meet with colleagues and work on homework.
The renovation of Business Building South’s first floor for the Dr. Tim Miller Center for Accounting Education is the culmination of two years’ work and cost approximately $600,000.
Tim Todd, dean of the Arthur J. Bauernfeind College of Business, said the addition of this center mirrors and builds off of the renovation of the first floor of Business Building North, which was completed in 2011.
The Dr. Tim Miller Center for Accounting Information, much like the State Farm Financial Services Resource Center and the Edward Jones Student Board Room, was created to help students and to reinforce the college’s image, Todd said.
“We are trying to renovate in strategic steps to further showcase that the Arthur J. Bauernfeind College of Business is in fact a state of the art, world-class business school, with excellent faculty and staff who are dedicated to educating and placing into the workforce our fantastic students,” he said.
The 5,700 square foot center was officially dedicated Oct. 10, and is named after the longtime accounting department faculty member Tim Miller. Miller also served as the University’s 12th president and is president emeritus.
A number of notable figures from the Arthur J. Bauernfeind College of Business spoke at the center’s dedication including Todd, the chair of the department of accounting, Don Chamberlain, and the college’s namesake, Arthur J. Bauernfeind. All spoke to the merit and contribution of Miller to the University and specifically the department of accounting.
Chamberlain, who served on the center’s planning committee, said he is satisfied with the work that was done and so far he considers the center’s implementation a success. He and the committee’s fellow members, he said, designed the center to include both casual and work-oriented elements.
The new space features a number of areas with chairs and tables for students to work at, a conference room for groups to meet in and the Herbert and Virginia Adams Student Learning Center, which was dedicated on the same day as the center. The learning center includes computers and a printer for students and more work areas.
Chamberlain said students have utilized the center so frequently since it opened at the beginning of the school year that additional tables and chairs as well as possibly more computers are being considered to accommodate the demand.
Brittany English, senior accounting major from Metropolis, Ill., said one of her favorite features of the new center is the relocated faculty offices from the third floor.
“Before, I feel we were closed off from the professors,” English said. “But now, we can see our professors walking around the center or if their door is open and we can ask them questions about a project or class.”
English said she also enjoys having a space for her and her fellow accounting majors to meet and talk, study and eat between classes. The only space they had to do work in the Business Building before, she said, was in the third floor computer lab which was frequently booked for classes.
Anthony Hughes, senior accounting major from Paducah, Ky., said he spends almost all his time in the center now whereas before he had studied for classes primarily in Waterfield Library.
“I’m always studying here now because I can see the professors,” Hughes said. “Before I’d have to run back and forth between the Business Building and the library if I had a question. It’s just so much better.”
With the accounting center complete, Todd said, the college’s next project will be the creation of a high-end student computing classroom which will take on a feel of a “trading room” on Wall Street.
Story by Ben Manhanke, Staff writer