The renumbering of classrooms and faculty offices has returning students and faculty a bit turned around this semester. Oklahoma Christian University began the renumbering to aid emergency respondents.
“With the standard 911 system, when someone called emergency, the dispatcher could only see our 2501 East Memorial Road address, then would have to rely on a staff member, usually security, to meet and escort them to the incident. With the enhanced system, when you call, they can see the number the call came from, the building and the office number, so it results in a much faster response,” Jesse McCracken, manager of IT project and telecommunications said.
Nearly all classrooms were renumbered before the fall semester began, and faculty offices will be renumbered after the classrooms are complete. The only campus facilities that won't be renumbered are the housing phases.
Bob Lashley, director of special events, and McCracken attempted to come up with alternatives to renumbering the campus, but ultimately decided it was necessary.
“We were both working on our own things when I learned of the upgrade, and we decided that it would be more beneficial to work together,” Lashley said.
Lashley joined the renumbering project while working on re-doing floor plans for emergency exits and shelters when he learned that McCracken was also working on an upgrade of the emergency system.
“We spent time trying to make the original numbers fit and implement some kind of consistency between buildings, but there were too many configurations to make sense of it all, so the best choice was to renumber,” Lashley said.
Faculty offices will be renumbered soon, but they decided the most pressing issue was to get all of the classrooms finished first.
“We thought it would be best to complete the classrooms before school started, so it would reduce the amount of confusion on the first days of class,” Jay Jones, Vice President of University Services, said.
All of the classrooms have been renumbered except the second floor of the Mabee Learning Center and the Vose Hall, which is still under construction.
The marketing department designed the new signs so there is a consistent look everywhere on campus. In addition to the building and room number, each sign has Braille to comply with the American Disabilities Act. .
“It was a little confusing at first, and I was kind of running around, but the second and third time it became easier,” sophomore Sarah Duvall said.
The administration prepared the campus for the change to prevent confusion during the scramble of the first week of classes. Some departments put up signs showing what the classrooms are now called.
“It caught me off guard a little bit, but the rooms haven't changed, just the numbers, so you just go where you know. I'm a sophomore, so it was kind of easy to remember where the classes were from last year,” sophomore Hayley Neff said.
“We notified the registrar so the classroom assignments could be changed on myOC to correlate with the new numbers, so students would see the same thing on their schedule that was on the door,” Jones said.
Kerri Cunningham, executive assistant to the president, discussed the change with each departmental secretary to help prepare them for any potential questions from students.
The renumbering is scheduled to be complete before the end of the fall semester.
The administration says it appreciates everyone's patience as it completes this project, making the university's communication with emergency services more efficient.