CARBONDALE, ILL. (KFVS) - Governor Pritzker announced the release of $8.3 million to begin renovations and expansion on the communications building on SIUC’s campus.
In a event on Jan. 21, Governor Pritzker announced the funding.
The $8.3 million is part of a larger $83 million appropriation the campus received in their yearly budget for the construction of a communications building and other capital improvements on campus.
“I’m so proud to announce that we are launching the renovation and expansion of the Communications Building here at SIU-C. This state-of-the-art facility will train thousands of students for jobs in media and communications with the best equipment and facilities we can provide. The students who learn at this facility won’t just be prepared to meet the needs of the media industry of the future — they’ll be prepared to lead it into its next phase, prioritizing the values that led them to the field in the first place,” said Governor Pritzker.
The funding from the project came from the bipartisan Rebuild Illinois capital plan.
The SIU Board of Trustees chair J. Phil Gilbert released a statement following the announcement by Governor JB Pritzker.
“Capital infrastructure investment is critical for the long term success of the Southern Illinois University System and the thousands of students, who do and will one day call an SIU campus home. On behalf of the Board of Trustees and everyone at SIU Carbondale, I want to personally thank Governor Pritzker for this first release of capital dollars that will allow us to begin reconstruction of the Communications Building. This last year was tremendous for the SIU System and higher education in Illinois. A great deal of appreciation goes to our state legislators, from both sides of the aisle, who came together with Governor Pritzker to support an operations and a capital budget that is turning the tide by making our colleges and universities a priority once again. Investing in our campuses and our students is one of the best ways to begin boosting our local economies by convincing our young people that Illinois is a great place to stay after high school to begin their college career. The reconstruction of the Communications Building will give our students an even greater advantage in preparing them for the workforce. And, it will allow our faculty to teach in state-of-the-art facilities which will be a tremendous draw for future students for years to come. We could not do this without the support of Governor Pritzker and our great legislative delegation,” said J. Phil Gilbert.
The Communications Building was constructed in 1964 and houses the College of Mass Communications and Media Arts, including the WSIU-TV and WSIU-FM studios as well as the student newspaper, the Daily Egyptian. The building is also used by the College of Liberal Arts for programs in theater and speech communications.
The funding will provide new classroom space, fully equipped and flexible auditorium space, laboratory rooms, and digital post-production suites to reflect the growing trend toward media convergence in a combined print-broadcast newsroom. Advances in technology have had a profound impact on the programs which are housed in the building, including cinema and photography, journalism, and radio, television, and digital media. The addition will allow for future changes in technology through innovative design and the creation of flexible work areas.