The ‘new’ Smith Hall on the campus of Gordon College was officially dedicated with a ribbon cutting Friday, April 20.Participating in the ceremony were Gordon president Max Burns, Byron Smith, Joe Smith, Rebecca Graham, all descendants of W.B. Smith for whom the building is named; Trey Varner, a senior early childhood education major; and Mike Mahan, chair of the division of education.Byron Smith told the crowd of about 100 people that his grandfather, W.B. Smith, was quite a businessman who at different times owned a newspaper, mortuary and a bank as well as other business ventures. The family is most known for the Barnesville Buggy Works which was, during its day, the largest in the South.Smith is among a long list of Gordon graduates. He, his parents and both sets of grandparents all graduated from the school.’He loved this school as much as anyone has,’ Smith said of his grandfather.Smith Hall, built in 1939 as a Works Progress Administration project, will house the division of teacher education.’We are thrilled to offer our education students a state-of-the-art learning environment that, at the same time, acknowledges Gordon’s history,’ said Mike Mahan, chair of the division.From 1972 until April 2011 Smith Hall was the home of Gordon’s nursing program. When the nursing program moved into the new Nursing and Allied Health Sciences building, plans got under way to renovate Smith to accommodate the growing education division ‘“ Gordon’s first four-year degree program.Administrative offices are on the first floor with four classrooms and a computer lab on the second floor. Two of the rooms will be set up to simulate actual classrooms ‘“ one for the elementary program and another for the middle/secondary program.Classes will begin in the ‘new’ building this summer.
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