The Ganus Building is scheduled to be demolished and replaced by the new Holland-Waller Center, bringing changes to departments and programs on campus. Some faculty have fond memories of the Ganus Building, but they are excited for change.
“What matters in any college is not the facility but being able to be face to face with somebody that has something to offer,” Dr. Kevin Klein, professor of history, said. “But, having a place is important, and that’s the thing that is lost when you lose this building.”
Though he is excited for the change, Klein said people, including himself, are losing memories made in the Ganus Building. Prior to hosting the History and Political Science and Foreign Language and International Studies departments, the building at one time hosted the Student Center and Communication, Theatre and Music Departments.
“It makes sense to get all the programs together,” Dr. Nicky Boyd, director at International Student Services, said. “We’re scattered.”
Boyd said the reason International Student Services is moving is to have a central location for programs and departments, and he is excited about moving to a new location.
Klein said the Ganus Building is an eye sore for some and a “constant headache” for maintenance crews, but it transports older alumni through memories of their college days when they would socialize in the Ganus Building during its time as the student center. Two benefits of the Holland-Waller Center, Klein said, are keeping the same location for the departments in the Ganus Building and newness.
“Especially coming out of the last two years, when so much has been about hanging on, the idea of starting fresh is nice,” Klein said. “That’s a good thing.”
The new facility will host the ROTC program, Office of International Student Services, Walton Scholars program, Sino-American Studies Institute and the English as a Second Language program. These programs, Klein said, have been added over time and placed where space was available, and they will now have a more purposeful location.
“It’s the only place that I’ve been since I came back from France and started teaching at Harding,” Dr. Robert McCready, professor of foregin languages, said. “It’s kind of a second home.”
McCready, who has been in his office in the Ganus Building for 20 years, said the building holds sentimental memories, but he is not sentimental about leaving the Ganus Building because a new building is needed.
“I’ve had water come pounding on my head [in my office],” McCready said. “And I’ve had another time when I came in and the whole ceiling had come through and the entire place was flooded, which is why my carpet doesn’t match the rest of the building.”
Harding held a celebration of the Ganus Building, named in honor of Clifton L. Ganus Sr., April 16. Construction of the new building is anticipated to begin in August after the Ganus Building is razed in June. A $4 million contribution by the Waller family made the replacement possible, and the building will “feature displays in recognition of the contributions made by women to the University.”