Core Requirement 2.11.2

The institution has adequate physical resources to support the mission of the institution and the scope of its programs and services. (Physical resources)

X Compliance ___ Partial Compliance         Non-Compliance

 

Narrative:

The institution has adequate physical resources to serve the mission of the institution and to support its programs and services for current enrollment. This conclusion is supported by assessment of available physical resources, including land and campus facilities; strategic facilities planning; growth/renovation of facilities consistent with enrollment; and appropriate space allocations.

Mission Alignment

Nicholls State University’s mission [1] states “Nicholls State University is a student-centered regional institution dedicated to the education of a diverse student body in a culturally rich and engaging learning environment through quality teaching, research and service.” Nicholls capitalizes on the region’s geography and culture by offering distinctive academic programs in the culinary arts and petroleum services. With its prime location along the banks of Bayou Lafourche and easy access to the Gulf of Mexico, Nicholls also provides unique opportunities for instruction and research in the fields of marine and environmental science.

The map [2] of the campus shows a relatively small campus, with easy access to all areas of campus. Administrative spaces are all in the front of campus, in close proximity to each other to allow easy access for students. The academic buildings are the center of campus, surrounding the student union as a center point for an engaged student body. Residence halls are in easy walking distance to all areas of campus and the newly constructed recreation center provides another opportunity for engagement with members consisting of students, faculty, administrators, and alumni.

The campus is comprised of 85,142 square feet designated for classrooms and 82,800 square feet designated for laboratories.  In 2012, a 63,334 square-foot student recreation center was added, and in May 2015, a 31,120 square-foot culinary arts instruction building was completed.  Total campus square footage is 1,067,398.

Allocation of Space for Instruction

The Louisiana Board of Regents (Regents) has established space standards, related to the quantity and type of space. These standards apply only to classroom and laboratory space. Net Assignable Square Feet (NASF) is defined by the Regents as space available to be utilized for a specific function, such as for classroom or laboratory, and includes the entire floor area within the walls of a room or other type of space. Section 1.2.10 of the BOR Facilities Policy and Procedures [3] states:

Table 1: Louisiana Board of Regents, Facilities Policy and Procedures, Section 1.2.10 Space Standards
In classrooms, there should be 15 NASF per student station, rooms should be used 30 hours per week, and when in use, rooms should be 60% of capacity. The resultant formula is: SF = 15/(30×0.6) = 0.83. Calculated another way, S. F. = 11 NASF/SCH = 0.83.
In laboratories, there should be 40 NASF per student station, rooms should be used 20 hours per week, and when in use, rooms should be 80% of capacity. The resultant formula is: SF = 40/(20×0.8) = 2.50. Calculated another way, S. F. = NASF/SCH = 2.50. W

Information on building [4], room inventory [5], and space utilization [6] is reported annually by the Office of Assessment and Institutional Research and Physical Plant Operations to the Regents. This information is listed on our Space Utilization Report [7] that is forwarded to the Board of Regents on a yearly basis. The report includes changes in building usage and the addition or deletion of square footage. This report supports the University’s position that it possesses sufficient facilities to support its programs and services. This report is also a factor in determining the direction of the University’s capital outlay request.

The Regents also produces an annual report of space utilization for all institutions in the state for the purpose of management of resources. The 2014 Facilities Inventory and Utilization Study [8] provides further evidence that Nicholls State University has adequate space when compared to other institutions in the state. Table 10: Assignable Square Feet Per Student Station for Classrooms [9] shows a comparison of all institutions in the state. For 2014, Nicholls has 16 sq. ft. per student station, which meets the Regents standard of 15 per student, and is in line with other four-year public institutions.

An analysis of space factors can be found in Table 12 [10] of the report. As stated in Table 12, “space factors is an assessment measure of both space allocation and space utilization in one term. It is defined as the assignable square feet of teaching space per student clock hour of instruction per week.” Nicholls has a space factor of 1.75 for classrooms and the average for all public four-year institutions is 1.47, which means Nicholls space is slightly under-utilized. For laboratory space, Nicholls has a space factor of 5.12, and the state average is 5.21. Nicholls has adequate space compared to other public four-year institutions in the state.

The campus is comprised of 85,142 square feet designated for classrooms and 82,800 square feet designated for laboratories. In 2012, a 63,334 square-foot student recreation center was added, and in May 2015, a 31,120 square-foot culinary arts instruction building was completed. Total campus square footage is 1,067,398.

Allocation of Space for Administrative Services

Administrative space is equally adequate to house the support services of the institution. The executive administration occupies Picciola Hall, while student support service offices—Admissions, Student Employment, Financial Aid, and Registrar—are located in Candies Hall. Remaining administrative staff and student services occupy Elkins Hall. All three (3) buildings are easily accessible to the students. Deans and faculty are located in the academic buildings where students take classes and which are also easily accessible to students.

Land Acquisitions

Prior to 2007, the campus was situated on 211 acres of land. Anticipating growth of the culinary program and student services, the University purchased 76 acres of land to the east of the campus in October 2007. This acquisition provided adequate land to construct the student recreation center complex and to construct the culinary arts instruction building. When factoring in approximately twenty (20) remaining acres of land south of the athletic complex, the University has sufficient land to handle the expansion of the campus well into the future.

Growth of Campus Facilities

New construction and building renovations have been utilized to provide adequate program space to support enrollment changes and University needs. Since 2010, the University has added 31,120 square feet of new academic space and renovated 60,650 square feet of academic space. Three (3) new residence halls were constructed (183,978 square feet), and two (2) residence halls were renovated totaling 67,509 square feet. A 63,334 square-foot student recreation center was constructed in 2012.

With a stable enrollment spanning several years, the University’s current Five Year Capital Outlay plan [11] has shifted its focus away from new construction to a plan that strongly supports renovation of existing facilities.

The University’s strategic plans and departmental facility requests are utilized in determining which renovation projects will be included. The Department of Physical Plant Operations also holds quarterly meetings that assist in identifying deferred maintenance needs and add to the list of renovation projects.

Documentation
1 Nicholls State University>About Nicholls>Strategic Plan
2 Nicholls State University, Campus Map (JPEG)
3 Louisiana Board of Regents>Finance and Facilities>Facilities>Policies and Procedures (PDF)
4 Louisiana Board of Regents, Fall 2014 Nicholls State University Building Inventory Edit (PDF)
5 Louisiana Board of Regents, Fall 2014 Nicholls State University Room Inventory Edit by Building (PDF)
6 Louisiana Board of Regents, Fall 2014 Nicholls State University Classroom and Laboratory Utilization Edit Report (PDF)
7 Nicholls State University, 2015-2016 Space Allocation Report (PDF)
8 Louisiana Board of Regents, 2014 Facilities Inventory and Utilization Study
9 Louisiana Board of Regents, Facilities Inventory and Utilization Study, Table 10 Assignable Square Feet per Student Station for Classrooms (PDF)
10 Louisiana Board of Regents, Facilities Inventory and Utilization Study, Table 12 Space Factors (PDF)
11 Nicholls State University, Capital Outlay Five Year Plan 2015-2016 (PDF)