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NOC Holds Central Hall Open House


Northern Oklahoma College celebrated 115 years of providing life-changing experiences to thousands of students at an Open House showcasing the newly renovated Central Hall Oct. 19.

Students, NOC employees, special guests and community residents gathered before the main entrance to the historic building to hear comments from Dr. Cheryl Evans, NOC president; Tom Dugger, NOC Board of Regents chair; and Dr. Pamela Stinson, vice president for academic affairs.

Sheri Snyder, vice president for development and community relations, introduced special guests Tonkawa mayor Ken Smith, Tonkawa city manager Kirk Henderson, Lambert Construction Company president Mark Lambert with Paul Christian and Steve Anderson, and Timothy Herzer and Chris Seat from GH2 Architects. as well as NOC Regents Tom Dugger, Linda Brown, Stan Brownlee and Jeff Cowan.

Evans welcomed the group, saying “I’m so excited to be celebrating 115 years of Northern Oklahoma College at this very historical event!” She gave a brief overview of the founding of the institution six years before Oklahoma became a state and of the construction of Central Hall, completed for the first classes in 1902. “From the very beginning, this structure has physically and metaphorically been Central to the institution’s mission,” she stated.

Speaking on behalf of the NOC Regents, Dugger said, “Our program today symbolizes the complete restoration of our most historic building at Northern which will continue to make a transforming difference in the lives of our current and future students.” He thanked President Evans and the team of NOC employees for their “leadership, passion and commitment to Northern and thanked “everyone else for joining us today as we celebrate NOC’s 115th anniversary.”

Stinson told the crowd, “From a one-building campus in 1901 to today, we have grown to offering classes at four NOC locations, in 16 classroom buildings, with 101 full-time faculty and over 100 adjunct faculty, serving the needs of over 4,000 students each year. What has remained steady over the past 115 years is our commitment to students—to create opportunities for them to make better lives for themselves and to give them a solid foundation for a lifetime of learning.”

Language Arts faculty members conducted tours through Central Hall, showing the spacious classrooms and offices, with new luxury vinyl tile flooring in halls and classrooms; carpeting in offices; and ceramic tile on hall walls. New windows, matching the originals as closely as possible and featuring roller shades, make the building appear more open and light, and hallways now lead to the elevators. A French drain has been installed around the building and the exterior walls below ground have been sealed.

Language Arts faculty at NOC Tonkawa include Dr. Cathy Moore, division chair; fulltime faculty Stacey Frazier, Scott Haywood, Dr. Brandon Hobson, Dean Pearcy, Alicia Sharp and Dr. Don Stinson; and adjunct faculty Doris Osborn, Karen Payne and Al Riddle.