One of East Stroudsburg University’s oldest buildings is undergoing transformation. Monroe Hall, built in 1941, has stood silent for the past 6 years, but come May 2012, that will change. The building, which stands adjacent to Minsi Resident Hall, is being completely renovated. The renovation will include an elevator, an allowable entry and exit way from Centre Street, new classrooms, and will become the new home of The Speech and Pathology Center.
Part of the first and the entire second floor of Monroe Hall will house The Speech and Pathology programn, and the Speech Communications Department will occupy the third floor. Project manager John Bloshinski stated, “The department will receive more labs, a larger audiology room, larger observation room, four diagnostic rooms, a larger work room for graduate students, additional office space, and 8 clinic rooms.”
The building will also house three shared University classrooms, a stepped lecture hall that will hold 70 occupants, one seminar room, two conference rooms, a study room, and a storage/recycling room.
To the Speech and Pathology Program, this change could not come soon enough. Department Chair, Dr. Elaine M. Shuey is thrilled about the new move.
“We’ve been waiting for this for about 10 years!” Shuey said. “We’re excited about the prospect of moving into a refurbished Monroe Hall. Not only will we have all the upgrades that go with this type of construction, but we’ll have the room we’ve been lacking.
LaRue Hall is a great building but not nearly big enough for our clinical program. And currently, we have one faculty member, several therapy rooms, and a family of skunks out in the LaRue Annex. In Monroe, we’ll all be together, hopefully without the skunks!”
Over the years the program has grown, so the building comes as a great asset.
Due to the renovations, part of the University quad has been torn up to insert a new geothermal heat pump system, which according to Bloshinski, is composed of 48 wells, each 200 feet deep, that utilize the constant earth temperature of 55 degrees to heat and cool the building.
The quad is expected to return to normal by mid to late spring. However, the contractor is trying to restore it much sooner.
Having half the quad undergo construction is a major loss to those who use it regularly to play games such as football, frisbee, and catch. Senior Adam Medvitz said, “It kinda stinks, you know ‘cause there’s less space to play. I mean, I usually play football out here ‘cause its nice and flat, but it’s okay. It’s good to at least see that they’re finally doing something to that building [Monroe Hall] so it won’t just be sitting there wasting space.”
Following the construction of Monroe Hall, LaRue Hall, which currently holds the Speech-Language Pathology department, will be demolished and turned into green space. This will be completed 90 days after the building is evacuated.