Grand Opening Ceremonies Held for New EKU Campus in Somerset

Photo of Ribbon-Cutting at Somerset Center

Addressing a large crowd that had gathered at grand opening ceremonies for Eastern Kentucky University’s new Somerset campus, Terri Reynolds could hardly contain her excitement.

“Finally, Somerset has its first four-year, state-sponsored university,” beamed Reynolds, coordinator for the campus. “The Lake Cumberland area has long awaited this morning.”

The 5,000-square-foot campus is located on the western outskirts of Somerset, at 46 Turpin Court near the intersection of old KY 80 and Hail Knob Road, approximately one mile west of US 27. It enables EKU to offer its entire paralegal degree program as well as its RN-to-BSN (Registered Nurse to Bachelor of Science in Nursing) program, among other courses that contribute toward degree completion.

The ceremony included remarks from several EKU and community officials.

EKU President Doug Whitlock said the new Somerset campus “sits right at the intersection” of the University’s twin commitments to student success and regional stewardship.

Noting Somerset Community College President Dr. Jo Marshall in the audience, Whitlock said the facility “will enable us to pursue more 2-plus-2 programs. We look forward to working hand-in-hand with Somerset Community College to continue serving the people of this area.”

Somerset Mayor Eddie Girdler called the Center opening “a tremendous moment in our history. We do appreciate the President and Eastern for investing in Somerset and Pulaski County. We welcome EKU with open arms and we look forward to a great relationship with a great university.”

Already, 87 students are attending classes at EKU’s Somerset campus, a number EKU officials expect to rapidly grow. Twenty-eight course sections are offered, and this semester students are taking 400-plus credit hours.

Dr. Charles Hickox, dean of Continuing Education and Outreach for EKU, thanked Reynolds for her efforts.

“Terri Reynolds is a driving force in this community for EKU and is largely responsible for us being here this morning,” Hickox said. “We’ve grown already and we anticipate much more growth.”

Hickox vowed the University would work closely with SCC to offer more courses and with the local business community to offer more workforce training.

Other speakers at the event were EKU Provost Dr. Janna Vice and Chris Girdler, representing Congressman Hal Rogers.

All the classrooms at EKU’s Somerset campus are equipped for interactive TV (ITV) or traditional classes. Students can take ITV classes originating from the EKU Richmond campus or from anywhere in the world.

For more information about opportunities available at the Somerset campus, contact Reynolds at 606-676-0838, 859-358-4596 or at terri.reynolds@eku.edu, or visit www.somerset.eku.edu. Also, Transfer Coordinator Gail Creekmore can be reached at 606-451-6708 or gail.creekmore@eku.edu.

Published on March 16, 2011