President Sweet outlines goals for university
The university president wants enrollment to reach 14,000 by fall 2008.
YOUNGSTOWN -- Youngstown State University's president has announced ambitious goals for the future of the university and environs.
"Rather than an island oasis amid central city decline, the campus will become the focal point for urban renewal beyond its immediate borders," YSU President David Sweet said in his fifth annual state of the university address Thursday.
Sweet outlined goals of the campus master plan, including what he said was a long-needed new building for the Williamson College of Business, a linkage of the Fifth and Wick avenue corridors with downtown, reopening the Wick-Pollock Inn, making Spring Street the main campus street from Fifth Avenue to the Courtyard Apartments, and replacing the outmoded Lincoln Deck with 1,000 new parking spaces.
He also announced that the university will embark on a centennial capital campaign to raise money for scholarships, endowed faculty positions, campus development and technology as the university prepares to celebrate its centennial in 2008.
Two new staff positions have been added in the university's office of development, and a comprehensive university archives will be established on the fifth floor of the university's Maag Library, Sweet announced.
Sweet also announced a goal of increasing student enrollment to 14,000 by the fall of 2008, with more than 80 percent of the students attending full time and more than 10 percent of them living in campus housing.
Fall semester enrollment has risen 9.1 percent from 11,787 in 2000 to 12,858 in 2003, and Sweet predicted that, this fall, it will top 13,000 for the first time since 1995.
Sweet announced a goal of increasing graduate enrollment from 10 percent to 15 percent of total student enrollment by 2008. However, he said, "Achieving this ambitious goal will not significantly alter our primary mission in the Mahoning Valley, which is to provide the highest quality undergraduate education."
The university will strive to provide students with "the total undergraduate experience in which education extends beyond the classroom through opportunities for research, community service and leadership training,'' Sweet said.
Sweet cited the mapping of neighborhood conditions by geography students in support of the Youngstown 2010 plan as an example of what he called "service-based learning."
"Graduate programs are important and must complement our undergraduate focus and meet specific work-force needs in the region," he said, noting that the university's new master's of social work program is welcoming its first class this fall.
This fall, the university is welcoming 23 new faculty members. That brings the number of new full-time faculty arriving on campus in the past three years to 77, or almost 20 percent of the faculty, he said. This summer, the university has created eight new classrooms in Fedor Hall and at Maag Library, he added.