If you’ve been on the Taylorsville Redwood campus at all this summer, you’ve certainly noticed the new fountain on the quad. It’s the latest addition to the landscape, and definitely catches the eye; especially at night, when the water jets are illuminated and change colors.
This new jet-propulsion fountain is only part of a multi-phase renovation known as the Legacy Project, taking place on the Taylorsville Redwood quad. The Legacy Project offers students, faculty members and alumni the opportunity to leave their legacy at SLCC, in a few interesting ways. Students, faculty, alumni and sponsors can purchase bricks, concrete pavers, trees, and even granite benches that can be engraved with a message of ones choosing. Your name and graduation date, a special message, or corporate logo can all be etched in stone as a long-lasting legacy to your experience here at Salt Lake Community College.
SLCC Computer Information Systems (CIS) student Ryan Linschoten, an aspiring architect, has played an instrumental role in the design of the project. Public Relations Director Joy Tlou says that Linschoten was also the designer of the Legacy Project’s layout page and virtual tour, which can be found at slcc.edu/legacyproject. Ryan is currently employed by GSBS Architects, the firm contracted with the project. In an article written by the Salt Lake Tribune’s Stephen Hunt, Linschoten gives a student’s perspective. He suggests ways to make the quad more beautiful and useful by opening the area up and providing more seating. Ryan plans to finish his education at the University of Utah.
“Some students have voiced concerns over the financial responsibility of this project. Their concern is that the school is paying for these projects with raised tuition, focusing more on aesthetics than education. These concerns are legitimate, but uninformed. There is a misconception that the school provides the funding to complete all of these projects, when in fact SLCC signed up for state funding, and is merely taking advantage of state funds that were readily available for just such projects,” says Tlou.
What many people don’t know is that funding for the fountain itself came from the State of Utah. The Legacy Project is intended to raise money to add to the overall aesthetic beauty of the quad and campus, as well as provide a more permanent means for students, alumni, and faculty to remember and commemorate their collegiate experience. The sale of items on the quad is not the source of funding for the fountain.
What do students and faculty think of the new fountain? The general consensus is positive.
“It’s a fun way to add beauty to the campus. My daughter has already played in it,” says student Kim Stewart, “It’s a great way to be part of something lasting. Who knows… maybe your kids or grandkids will see it someday, and be proud of your contribution.”
Student Maaike Bennett says, “I was a little confused at first by its creation. In fact, I really didn’t even know that it existed until they turned it on, and then was pleasantly surprised.”
SLCC’s Alumni Director, Matt Bunker, said in regard to the fountain, “It’s a great addition to a beautiful campus. It will be a fun place for students and alumni to visit with their children in the future.”
All proceeds from the sale of these items will go directly into an alumni scholarship fund for SLCC students.
“As the Alumni Director, I get to collect the donations and inscriptions for the quad items. Many people have commented that SLCC was the best decision they’ve made for their education and future,” Bunker says. Unfortunately, the Alumni Association was only able to hand out one scholarship of $1,200 last semester, but the goal for the 2010-11 school year is to give away five of these alumni scholarships.
Back in 1985, the O.C. Tanner Foundation generously donated the fountain that had been a staple of the Taylorsville Redwood Campus for the past 25 years. Many who are just starting their academic careers at SLCC have never even seen the old fountain in its intact state. Some past and current students have voiced frustration about the removal of the old fountain, citing its sentimental value, and saying that the fountain should be repaired.
“The fountain has been replaced because it was old, unsafe, beyond repair and no longer cost effective to operate. This new fountain will actually save the school money over time,” says Tlou.
The new fountain is only the first of several major changes that are to take place on the Taylorsville Redwood quad in the near future. In later phases of the project, perhaps five to seven years down the road, the Administrative Building on the east side of campus will be torn down, allowing the quad area to expand out toward Redwood Road.
The goal is to create a symbolic gateway to the Taylorsville Redwood campus. The Legacy Project is ambitious in both scope and message, but upon completion is sure to add to an already beautiful college campus. The new fountain on the quad serves as a fitting symbol of the school’s past and future triumphs and successes.
For those interested in leaving a legacy on the quad, the SLCC Alumni Association has bricks, pavers, tree markers and benches still available. Bricks lining the fountain area go for $60, granite fountain pavers are $260, trees with markers are $660, and can be planted at the campus of the purchaser’s choosing. The smooth granite benches with side engravings are available for $2,060.