By Noah Sunshine || Senior Staff Writer
Early last week, the student body received an email from Margaret Hazlett, dean of the College, about a change in health services coming to campus as early as this July. Lancaster General Health (LGH), a healthcare company on the East Coast, will be partnering with the College for a reformed health service for students. This partnership will allow students the expertise of the LGH network’s doctors, but also opens up the use of their substantial infrastructure, including professional health equipment that normally requires referrals to use.
The partnership will be in full effect by this July, potentially including some staff changes in both F&M’s Health Services and Counseling services, also included in this reform. By Spring 2016, the reformed department will be relocated to the now vacant space on the first floor of College Square, where the Gibraltar restaurant used to be. The new space will be a much needed facelift for both health and counseling services, both located in a central part of campus, but in a building that hampers their potential
Currently, the space has undergone very little transformation, leaving bar, booths, and serving stations intact, while adding in some small appliances to increase utility for student organizations that can reserve it for events. The College has allowed students use of the space at no cost, provided they reserve it through the proper channels and seek outside security for late night events or events of a certain size. The campus-owned venue is expected to save thousands of dollars by the end of the year that would normally be funneled to off-campus event halls.
It is unlikely the students will see the Appel Health building be repurposed, as the building is rumored to be the new space for the Office of Student and Post-Graduate Development (OSPGD) as the college attempts to make them more central and visible to students. The philosophy behind the transfers are sound — students will find Health Services out of need, but must seek out OSPGD under their own volition, meaning a more central space will promote its utility to students more effectively than their current College Avenue
For students interested in more information about future developments of the F&M campus, the College has published its Strategic Priorities here.
Senior Noah Sunshine is a senior staff writer. His email is firstname.lastname@example.org.