New plans for the Morgan community addressed at townhall

Oyin Adedoyin, Contributing Writer

Morgan State University is gearing up for some groundbreaking changes over the next decade to accommodate the growing retention and acceptance rates. 

President David Wilson has vocalized through social media and the routine Morgan announcements about his plans for the campus. At Tuesday’s town hall meeting he revealed his plans for the university all to the nearly packed room of anxious students, faculty, and alum. 

“Morgan State University has challenges born out of the successes of this University,” said President Wilson.  

These challenges are about the housing shortage that Morgan has been experiencing over the past few years as more and more students are graduating from the University, and enrollment continues to rise. 

He began the meeting with a tribute to the 17th anniversary of 9/11 and the death of former Morgan State Women’s Basketball star, Tracey Carrington. He requested for everyone to take a moment of silence to honor those lost.  

“I am going to spend a lot of my time on…enhancing student success,” explained Wilson regarding the upcoming changes.  

Wilson announced short-term solutions the school is currently implementing such as triples in Blount Towers for a discounted price due to the higher female to male ratio on campus. He also disclosed plans of razing the Thurgood Marshall Complex this summer and building a new on-campus housing and dining hall like its neighbor, Rawlings Towers, but “more contemporary and visually appealing.”  

Students will be relocated to Marble Hall where Morgan is going to be increasing their number of student-occupied courts as well as completing renovations. Locations such as the Kensington Gate and Wellington Gate complexes will also be expanded for residential student use.  

As the Northwood reconstruction gets closer, Wilson detailed his plans for the area to resemble a “town center” once completed. Along with a public safety building and retail stores, a Barnes & Nobles, which raises the question of “What will become of the current on-campus bookstore?”

“We’re looking to move into the current space where the bookstore is, a fitness center…until we can build a stand-a-lone building,” said President Wilson. 

While students were excited to hear about the upcoming changes, most will have graduated by the time the new buildings are completed. Students were more concerned about measures being taken immediately to improve the quality of life for current residents. 

President Wilson explained immediate renovations that will be taking place in nearly all of the current residence halls, including fixing the leaking roofs in Harper Tubman and installing AC units in Baldwin and Cummings. These repairs are set to be finished, if weather permits, by the second semester of this school year. 

He addressed complaints regarding the current maintenance system in place at the residence halls. 

“Our system [maintenance] is not working,” he began. He continued to detail the amenities that will be made to the entire maintenance system. “Our goal is to mirror what you get when you check into a hotel.”  

After his 2-hour long presentation students lined up to recount their personal experiences ranging from the school’s limited visitation policy to the need for increased amenities for students with disabilities. President Wilson, along with faculty members from the Financial Aid office to the Police Department, took note of every problem and complaint. 

There was an air of excitement in the room as the meeting was dismissed, with most of the students looking forward to the upcoming changes. 

“I was pretty pleased with the topics discussed and I think that a lot of the students brought up really good points that our University needs to address,” said Chloe Colbert, a Junior, English major.  

“I think that the Northwood Plaza [reconstruction] is something we’ve been working towards for almost a year now and it’s nice to see that finally come to fruition for our campus.”