West Virginia Wesleyan College will begin construction on a new Welcome Center this spring. Thanks to a generous gift from Bruce and Jeannie O'Rourke Nordstrom, 1970, and a challenge grant from the Reeves Foundation of Princeton, N.J., the Nordstrom Welcome Center is set to open next fall on College Avenue, adjacent to the Virginia Thomas Law Center for the Performing Arts.
The Nordstrom Welcome Center will house the College's admission and financial aid departments. The addition of the new $1 million facility will allow Wesleyan to use the space in Middleton Hall that is currently occupied by the office of admissions for its expanding School of Health Science.
Three of Wesleyan's largest majors are part of the School of Health Science, including nursing, athletic training and exercise science. The College's nursing enrollment has grown to 143 students and now offers a range of graduate programs.
"We are delighted to add this much-needed Welcome Center to our campus for our prospective students and their parents," said Wesleyan President Pamela Balch. "This has been a long-time priority in our Master Campus Facilities plan and we are grateful to Bruce and Jeannie Nordstrom and the Reeves Foundation for their incredible generosity."
"In addition, the vacated space in Middleton also will allow us to accommodate the tremendous growth in our nursing program," Balch added. "We will soon expand the Howard and Audrey D. Holden Nursing Simulation Lab, and plans are underway to upgrade Middleton."
This is the third major challenge grant that Wesleyan has received from the Reeves Foundation. The previous awards helped Wesleyan complete the funding for the Virginia Thomas Law Center for the Performing Arts and the David E. Reemsnyder Research Center.
Wesleyan recently celebrated its largest entering class in a decade and its enrollment has climbed to more than 1,450 students. The College was recently listed as a first-tier best regional college in the latest edition of U.S. News and World Report's Best Colleges. For the second consecutive year, Wesleyan also is the only West Virginia college or university to be included in that publication's Great Schools at Great Prices category