By Rebecca Flannery
Baylor’s Hankamer School of Business’ relocation is leaving a gigantic footprint on the campus map. What the university plans to do with its old building is still under debate.
While a number of departments have expressed interest in the building, Tonya Lewis, assistant director of media communications, stated in an email to the Lariat that plans have not yet been finalized.
“There are a number of possibilities currently being considered [for the old building] but no specific plans have been made at this time,” Lewis said.
Dr. Terry Maness, dean of the Hankamer School of Business, said although he’s not involved with the plans for the current business building, he is aware of Baylor’s plan to renovate it.
“Baylor will spend time renovating and deciding which various programs will move into the building,” Maness said. “There’s definitely a need for the space, no question about that.”
In August, business students will begin classes in the 275,000- square-foot Paul L. Foster Campus for Business and Innovation. Maness said the school’s faculty and staff will be responsible for moving personal computers and office materials to their new offices beginning the last week of June.
“Part of what this move will do is change the culture of the business school,” Maness said. “We want this new place to serve a lot of different purposes for the students.”
Dr. Blaine McCormick, chair of the management department, said he is unaware of the plans for the soon to be empty business building.
“I know any department on campus would be blessed to have this space,” McCormick said. “It’s been such a great building and set of offices for the time being.”
Maness said the name of the new building was purposefully titled as a campus because of its ability to foster a more sociable community. McCormick said the campus will become a space to learn throughout the entire course of a day.
“It’s going to become a homebase for students,” McCormick said. “It’s a great learning environment set up with a variety of areas students can take advantage of.”
The new building will be equipped with 36 team meeting rooms for students to reserve as needed, a cafe, a centralized community space and several enclave areas scattered around the building in which students can study, Maness said.
“So much of learning today takes place outside the classroom,” Maness said. “That’s why we want to create this space for students to meet, socialize, learn from each other and have greater access to tools they need.”
The purpose for the new building will be to continue the work already set in motion by the current state of the business school, according to the campus website.
“The Hankamer School of Business has produced many renowned alumni — strong, innovative leaders who have blazed new trails and transformed industries across the globe,” the website states. “That tradition of excellence in business will not only continue at Baylor, but will thrive in the new Foster Campus.”