Prairie Hall opening

Southeast Community College in Milford held a ribbon-cutting ceremony for Prairie Hall, its newest dormitory, on Aug. 15. Dignitaries who helped cut the ribbon are, from left: Patrick Kelley, Milford mayor; Suzanne Gligorevic, Seward County Chamber and Development Partnership; Steven Ottmann, Keith Hammons and Nancy Seim of SCC’s Board of Governors; Ed Koster, SCC vice president for technology and Milford campus director; Dr. Paul Illich, SCC president; Kathy Boellstorff of the Board of Governors; and Stacy Riley, SCC assistant campus director and dean of students.

 Students will begin moving into Southeast Community College’s newest $8 million dorm, Prairie Hall, this week as they return for the first semester of a new school year.

SCC held a ribbon-cutting ceremony and tours of the new residence hall on Aug. 15.

“We’ve had a significant increase in the number of students wanting to live on campus,” Ed Koster, vice president for technology and Milford campus director said.

Prairie Hall is the campus’ newest dormitory since Pioneer Hall, which opened in 1991.

The 54,000-square-foot hall was built by Clark Enerson Partners, Sampson Construction and Caspers Construction.

The hall will house 149 students, both men and women, in suite-style dorms. Each suite will have four students, some with two students per bedroom and some with individual bedrooms.

Single rooms rent for $3,998 per bedroom, while double rooms rent for $3,858 per bedroom per semeser. That includes an 80-meal, all-you-can-eat meal plan in the dining hall.

Each suite also has a living area with furniture, television and internet service, a kitchenette with a full-size refrigerator, and a shared bathroom/shower area.

The building has open common spaces on the first and second floors and private study rooms on the second and third floors.

A laundry room on the lower level contains washers and dryers that run off an app so students don’t have to have quarters.

The lower level also has storage space, a tornado shelter and a community kitchen with stove and microwave for students to use.

Koster spoke at the ceremony and thanked SCC President Dr. Paul Illich for his role in making the new dorm a reality.

“I have badgered him, harrassed him, constantly given him a bad time about student housing, so thank you,” Koster said.

“He did,” Illich said. “He has a way of saying, ‘I can’t really grow Milford without student housing.’ He did a great job.”

Illich said the project was part of the college’s strategic plan, launched in 2015.

“Everything we’ve been doing has been focused on that strategic plan. This is one of many steps we’re taking to modernize Milford,” Illich said.

Koster said Nebraska Hall, another dormitory, will be renovated into classroom space, likely in the next two to three years. Cornhusker Hall will be torn down.

SCC’s new $13 million Crete Carrier Diesel Technology and Welding Center also is going up, just behind Prairie Hall on the west side of campus. It is expected to be completed in December.

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