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Clarion Ledger Features Belhaven's Fitzhugh Hall on Front Page

August 7, 2013 (Jackson) - Belhaven University's Fitzhugh Hall was featured on the front page of the Clarion Ledger today. Here is the full story from the Clarion Ledger:

Even though there’s still a couple of weeks before fall semester, a handful of Belhaven University students already were back on campus Tuesday, helping professors prepare new science labs for classes.

The labs are part of a recently finished project on campus, a yearlong $6 million project where the 100-plus-year-old Fitzhugh Hall was partially renovated and expanded following water damage to parts of the building and foundation, said spokesman David Sprayberry.

Sophomore Bethany Savoy of Brandon pitched in Tuesday morning, unpacking boxes in some of the biology labs. “All my classes will be in this building,” said the biology major.

Assisting Savoy was Bianca Key, of Jackson, and Jake Anderson of Phoenix. “We’re just doing our part,” Savoy noted. And while the help from students was appreciated, it was the professors in the building that were giddy.

The expansion to Fitzhugh not only meant updated facilities and more space, but it was also a joint effort of different science disciplines to work together, ushering the school’s program into a more modern science, said Reid Bishop, a chemistry professor and chair of the division of science and mathematics.

“One of the main things is the interdisciplinary space,” said Philip Carlson, a chemistry and physics professor. “Traditional chemistry, biology and physics are in their own separate locations, but modern science doesn’t really work that way.”

The shared space means students can be better prepared for the workforce as well, said Bishop. “If you’re a chemist, there’s a pretty good chance you’ll be employed by a biomedical company,” he said as an example.

The labs include computers with microscopes, linked with Wi-Fi for sharing results and findings with the rest of the class. Each new room offers more space, and the building is set up to use ultra pure water — a necessity for many experiments, Bishop pointed out.

“I’m most proud of the behind the scenes kind of stuff,” said Bishop of the technology and equipment installed in Fitzhugh. With two weeks until students fill up the new site, Bishop and other science professors are itching for the classes to start back up. “We focus on problems, real-life problems,” Bishop said. “Here we look at how do we use the different science disciplines to attack those problems.”

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Belhaven University stands among select Christian colleges and universities and has been repeatedly named one of “America’s 100 Best College Buys." The University offers 30 academic majors across a full spectrum of disciplines as well as a variety of graduate programs. In addition, Belhaven has achieved the distinction of being among only 30 universities nationally accredited in each of the major arts – music, theatre, visual art and dance. All programs are taught from a Christian worldview perspective and are guided by the mission to prepare students academically and spiritually to serve Christ Jesus in their careers, in human relationships, and in the world of ideas.

Belhaven University serves over 3,700 students offering undergraduate and graduate degrees on its residential campus, an online degree program, and graduate and adult degree programs in Jackson, Memphis, Orlando, Houston, Chattanooga, and Atlanta.

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