In a university-wide effort to better serve our community, on Saturday, June 30, WSU will launch a new optimized Public Information website to directly address topics of interest to WSU students, faculty, staff, students, alumni and friends of the university. The Public Information website -- which is being created in conjunction with the June 30 release of our newly redesigned WSU website -- is intended to be a public forum for information requests, facts, questions, and a voice for transparency efforts across the campus. We hope this new website will serve as an invitation to those in our WSU community who are eager to listen, address and resolve topics for the betterment of Kansas and the future of the university. Stay tuned for a link to the website.
Starting today (Tuesday, June 19), there will be a series of informational posts in WSU Today that will address current topics of interest, provide facts and address any possible falsehoods or misunderstandings.
The first in our series of transparency topics involves the funding for the Student Wellness Center and YMCA.
Better wellness options for students
In 2020, a new, 15,000-square-foot comprehensive Student Wellness Center connected to a new YMCA will open on campus. We’re excited for the enhanced health options these services will provide for our students, as well as faculty, staff, university partners and the community.
Among the many benefits for students are:
- Greatly expanded physical and mental health services, located all in one facility.
- Access to drop-in daycare through the YMCA, a service that has been unavailable to the campus community. WSU's Childhood Development Center will continue to operate its traditional childcare services.
- WSU students receive a membership to the new WSU facility as well as full access to all nine full-service YMCAs located in Sedgwick, Butler and Harvey counties.
- Membership to all of the YMCA's nine Wichita-area locations during construction of the campus facility.
There has been concern about the funding for this project. The actual amount paid to the YMCA yearly is $2.5 million to fund the turnkey operational costs of the new building, which will house Student Health Services, the Counseling Center and the YMCA fitness facilities. It also, as stated above, provides every student paying the services fee access to other area YMCA locations.
No student fees are being used for construction of the building itself. The annual costs paid from student fees, subject to inflationary increases, will cover operating costs. Student fees are always required to support such an enhancement of student health services, regardless of where these services are located on campus.
The YMCA has taken financial responsibility for construction and is conducting a fundraising campaign to do so. The WSU Board of Trustees has agreed to donate $5 million to the project. The university, through the Wichita State Innovation Alliance, is leasing the land to the YMCA for 50 years.