Dodge City Community College will hold a dedication ceremony at 10 a.m. Friday. The ribbon cutting is scheduled for 10 a.m. and will take place in the upper lobby of the newly-christened Jackson Hall.
The ceremony will include the unveiling of a memorial plaque and brief remarks by family members of Betty Jackson, Don Woodburn, president of the college. The chairman of the board of trustees and the building architect are also expected to speak. Refreshments will be served and staff and students will give tours of the new facility.
"There will be one really special surprise that we're not revealing," said Beverly Temaat, Dean of Students.
The residence facility is named after Betty R. Jackson, who joined the college staff in July of 1985 and was professor of education at the time of her retirement, July 7, 1997.
She also taught numerous other classes including English Comp. I, Intro to Education and student orientation classes.
"I know of hundreds of students who weren't necessarily education majors until they met Betty — now there are hundreds of her students teaching all over the country," Temaat said.
A native of the Oakley, Kan. area, Jackson had a remarkable career in higher education before coming to DC3. She was the first woman vice-president at a college in Oklahoma at a time there were few women in that position anywhere in the country.
She continued her educational adventures after her retirement. She and her sister, Barb Schroeder Foster, moved to Bella Vista, Ark., where Jackson saw an ad in the paper seeking a tap dance teacher at the local college. She responded and spent several years teaching tap dance.
"Betty was a strong advocate for all students, particularly the young women, so it's fitting the our new women's residence hall will bear her name," Temaat said.
Jackson died two years ago, but members of her family will be present at the dedication: her sister, Barb; and two of her four children.
"Any time you name a building after someone, a number of deserving names are on the list. When we announced this choice, everyone was thrilled," Temaat said.
The residence hall will be fully occupied this semester as students arrive to move in Sunday.
"There are already some women in the building now," Temaat said, "because they came early for women's volleyball camp, or for camps for the cheer and dance squads."
"As we've toured students through the facility, it seems that this kind of housing is what today's students expect," Temaat said.
The other older residence halls will also be fully occupied this semester.
"We've had four years of record enrollment increases and we expect an increase this year," Temaat said. "The president has already approached the board about beginning the research and study to plan for a new men's hall."
Page 2 of 2 - Although costs would be part of the equation, another new residence hall would likely be funded in the same manner as Jackson Hall: revenue bonds are paid back entirely by student fees and room and board fees.
"There is no impact to the general fund because of the residence hall project," Temaat said.
Meanwhile, work continues on the construction site as parking lots are finished, sidewalks are installed and landscaping is completed.
In the student union, a new suite of offices has modernized student services and work is winding down there as well.
"Jackson Hall gives us one more competitive edge when students are touring," Temaat said.
IF YOU GO
What: Dedication ceremony for Jackson Hall
When: 10 a.m. Aug. 10
Where: Upper lobby of the hall
Followed by tours of the building