New Ransdell building opens

The new Gary Ransdell Education Building seen from the Mass Media and Technology Hall on the first day of class.

Katherine Wade

Even though President Gary Ransdell wasn’t there to see it, the new education building named in his honor opened on Monday without a hitch.

“It’s not like I would have been walking up and down the halls checking what’s going on in all the classrooms,” Ransdell said with a laugh.

Ransdell was in Frankfort with regents Jim Meyer and Yvette Haskins on Monday to meet with Gov. Steve Beshear and discuss higher education.

The building, officially known as Gary A. Ransdell Hall, took two years of programming, design, site acquisition and construction to complete, said John Osborne, vice president of Campus Services and Facilities.

Osborne said there are still some finishing touches to be made before the building’s dedication in April.

Bryan Russell, director of Planning, Design and Construction, said the building had been a really successful project, opening on time and on budget.

Crofton senior Jennifer Robinson had her first class in the new building on Monday. She said it was a big improvement from Tate Page Hall.

“It is so bright and welcoming,” she said. “It’s also really cool because every room has a SMART Board. I think that will help us be better prepared to integrate that technology into our classrooms.”

Cave City senior Nick Carey, an education major, said he really liked the layout and design.

Ransdell said he takes a lot of pride in the new building.

“I would like to think that the performance of this university over the past 13 years is the reason the board decided to take that action,” he said. “That’s hardly my performance, but I am in the lead — if you will — for our campus growth, our vision and how we’re transforming ourselves.”

Ransdell said he was very grateful to have a building named in his honor.

“This is my alma mater,” he said. “This is my university, and I’ve dedicated most of my professional career to WKU. So to see your name on a building like that — yeah, that means a lot. It’s very special.”