“The plan is to have 55 rooms renovated with all-new carpet, paint, furniture, windows, sinks and countertops by the time students start school in August,” Johnson says.
According to the “Hall of Memories” plaque hanging in the Campbell Administration Building at Upper Columbia Academy (UCA) in Spangle, Wash., the original wing of the guys’ dorm was built in 1947, with the north wing added in 1963. The dorm has served the campus well but is definitely in need of some updating. Those improvements are happening this summer. Eric Johnson, UCA principal, shares that, thanks to some incredible donors, the entire building would be gutted and renovated to provide new rooms, bathrooms, chapel and lobby.
“The plan is to have 55 rooms renovated with all-new carpet, paint, furniture, windows, sinks and countertops by the time students start school in August,” Johnson says. With the updates, students will now have controls to adjust their own room temperature.
The bathrooms will be updated as well. “The lobby, chapel, stairs and hallway will be finished after that,” adds Johnson. Tours will give guests a chance to view the improvements during alumni weekend, Sept. 29–Oct. 1, 2017.
Since the renovations were not able to begin until after Upper Columbia Conference camp meeting finished June 17, 2017, the timeline is tight. “God is good, though,” Johnson says. “He provided incredible people to donate the funds that made this a possibility. He will help with the timing.”
Weston Davis, who coordinated the Wallace Dining Commons project, along with alumna Jaclin Smith, will oversee the dorm renovations.
Another big change for UCA is the modification of the 2017–18 school schedule. The school day will be shortened by one period. The first period will begin at 7:35 instead of 7:15, and the last period will end at 5:35 instead of 6:05. The music periods have been moved to before and after lunch so there is no conflict for students who would like to participate in both music and athletics. In addition, UCA will add French I as another option for foreign language, with French II being added the following year.
While these and other much-needed areas are being addressed, please continue to keep UCA in your prayers. “We must steadfastly remain committed to being intentional about sharing Christ with our students in every way possible,” Johnson says. "Thank you for the trust you have placed in UCA.”
For more information about UCA, please email or call 509-245-3600. Online registration is now available at www.ucaa.org.
Tamara Michalenko Terry, communication coordinator for Upper Columbia Academy when she wrote this article, is now associate director of communication for the Texas Conference.