Board of Trustees approves Phase I of Jim Crow Museum project

BIG RAPIDS - Phase I of the Jim Crow Museum project will move forward after the Ferris State University Board of Trustees approved funding during the board's regular meeting March 24.

The project's first phase includes retaining contracts necessary for the research, cooperative design and engineering construction drawings of a proposed facility to house the museum's more than 4,000 artifacts. Currently, the museum is housed in a 500 square-foot room, which limits the number of people who can view the materials and limits educational opportunities to showcase items of intolerance that teach students about tolerance, said museum Curator David Pilgrim, who also is a professor of Social Sciences at Ferris.

Visit for more information on the Jim Crow Museum expansion project.

In addition to approving the museum project, the board approved Residential Life and Dining Services Summer 2006 projects that include equipment purchases for Ferris' dining centers and roof repairs, painting and public area upgrades for residence halls.

The second phase of an extensive classroom renovation project also was approved and includes improving classroom technology and furnishings over five years. Phase I was implemented in Fall 2006, and to date, approximately 25 academic spaces have been enhanced.

The board also authorized a $1 million increase to the Instructional Resource Renovation project, bringing the total cost to $8.5 million. The renovation will include a floor plan reconfiguration, an upgrade of all exterior and interior finishes, as well as replacement of furniture, fixtures and equipment. Plumbing, electrical and mechanical systems also will be upgraded with energy-efficient systems that meet academic program requirements and reduce operational and maintenance costs. A connector between the IRC and Business building also is included in construction plans.


27 March, 2006