USU turning barn on campus into welcome center

Any students who have ever taken a walk eastward on campus have passed a barn that holds a lot of history for USU. As of 2012, the barn will be transformed to host USU’s Museum of Anthropology and campus Welcome Center.The building, known as “the barn,” is one of USU’s oldest structures, built in 1919, and has been known as the “Horse Barn” and the “Art Barn” until the Fine Arts complex was built in the 1970s. Since then, the barn has served as extra space for faculty and students but is fairly vacant due to being rendered dangerous because of fire code conditions. In order to preserve this USU antique, the barn is about to receive a makeover. Not only will the barn receive an up-to-par renovation, but a new face as well.According to information provided by anthropology professor Bonnie Pitblado, the Welcome Center will be a first on campus and will serve as a starting location for visitors. Visitors will be able to meet with a tour guide, receive information about the school, purchase tickets to campus events and browse through the connecting anthropology museum. With anthropology being the study of all people everywhere throughout time, the museum will give people a place to meet and explore. The mission of the museum will continue to be to educate two constituencies about the field of anthropology (and, secondarily museum studies).A museum brochure states that the new 12,000-square-foot building will be an upgrade for the Museum of Anthropology, which currently occupies a 2,000 square feet room in Old Main. Museum staffers teach more than 8,000 people a year, from college students to school kids, during its regular hours and Saturdays at the Museum events.

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