Wolk touts successes, plans future

Dave Wolk took the stage Aug. 30 in the Casella Theater to start a new year with an uplifting message detailing pastimprovements and advancements to come in the future.

He said 2012 offers a lot of great reasons to celebrate with December being the college’s 225th anniversary, September being the 50th anniversary of the inauguration of the nursing program and with the completion of the 2012 master plan.

“We celebrate a mission accomplished and the beginning of a new Castleton plan,” Wolk said with a hugesmile on his face. Ten years and $70 million later, the school has built five new dorms, new facilities, and made major advancements in the Huden Dining Hall, he said.

“Huden now feels more like home,” he said.

And with the completion of Hoff Hall, the first buildingin the state ever named after a governor who did more to support higher education than any other, on-campus living will have increased by close to 40 percent in the past eight years , he said.

Wolk also touted the creation of the first certificate for civic engagement, Castleton’s polling institute and the planting of 10 Spartan apple trees. The school even set a Guiness World Record and got exceptional feedback during it’s 10-year re-accreditation process, he said.

His talk then detailed specific projects as part of the 10-year plan from new bathrooms and a roof in Adams Hall to energy efficient LED lighting across campus and major renovations to the science center.

 But Wolk stressed that the growth isn’t done. And one upcoming project sent the crowd to its feet cheering during convocation.

“In the winter we will transform the Pavilion itself into a covered recreational skating rink, open to everyone at the college and in the community free of charge,” he announced to thunderous applause.

And now the college is embarking on a new master plan to continue growth and keep moving forward, he said.

 “Today we celebrate these reflections on the past decade of renaissance, as well as the aspirations that guide us into the next decade. I can tell you that I have never been more excited about the college, and our future, than I am todoy, he said.

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