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Sharing Our Appreciation: Dean Foley Hosts Lunch for Construction Workers


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workers eating lunch

Construction workers don’t usually receive this much appreciation. The crews and contractors working on the new Sorenson Legacy Center for Clinical Excellence were recently treated to lunch by Beth Foley, dean of the Emma Eccles Jones College of Education and Human Services. 

Dr. Foley hosted the catered event to show her gratitude for the effort going into this enormous project. Jacob Romney, project manager with R&O Construction, said, “I’ve been on every major campus in Utah, and this is the first time I’ve seen a dean do something like this for the crews.”

Dallas Miller, superintendent with R&O Construction, has enjoyed working with Dean Foley and Associate Dean Shelley Lindauer. “They attend every owner meeting and give us their feedback on each aspect of the project, from layout to paint colors,” he said. “Beth’s vision is a valuable asset to us, and her input is always needed.”

Most of the companies working on the building are local—concrete, drywall, excavation, electrical, plumbing, masons, and painting. Dean Foley explained that she gained a new appreciation for the technical skills involved. “I didn’t know about all that goes into these projects and the importance of every single piece of it,” she said. “Everyone is giving us such a high level of quality, and they feel pride in this building.” 

Miller has observed the impact of the dean’s leadership on the construction: “People feed off her positivity and her enjoyment of this project,” he said. “She is open minded and tries to make the best decision possible, no matter what it takes.”

The construction crews are invested in the purpose of the building and excited to talk about the sound booths, simulation labs, clinics, café, and hydrotherapy pool. The center is due to open in the spring of 2018. “It will be a unique building, adding significant interest to the USU campus,” said Miller. “With this team, I have seen everyone get on the same page, willing to sacrifice for the benefit of others—that kind of cooperation is reflected in the quality of the job.”

The two separate buildings that comprise the entire Sorenson Center will be connected by glass bridges, with open landscapes and a courtyard in the middle. Darrell Stuart, a plumber with CCI Mechanical, said, “It’s rewarding to be a part of this—my kids will come here to college, and each time we see that building, I can say that I was a part of it.”

building under construction

Sorenson Center Under Construction

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