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Trinity High School construction on track to be completed in December

A thinly veiled plastic sheet is the only thing separating Trinity High School students from what will be the newest part of their school. The 116,000-square-foot east wing will be completed in December and students will return on Jan. 3 and star...

Steve Glasser, president of Dickinson Catholic Schools, stands outside of the construction of the east wing of Trinity High School on Monday, Aug. 15, 2016. (Press Photo by Kalsey Stults)
Steve Glasser, president of Dickinson Catholic Schools, stands outside of the construction of the east wing of Trinity High School on Monday, Aug. 15, 2016. (Press Photo by Kalsey Stults)

A thinly veiled plastic sheet is the only thing separating Trinity High School students from what will be the newest part of their school.

The 116,000-square-foot east wing will be completed in December and students will return on Jan. 3 and start utilizing the state-of-the-art space.

Tunnels and metal beams have been replaced with crisp white floors and a newly finished cafeteria in the remodeled west wing.

"Good things happen to people that wait and we've been waiting a while," Dickinson Catholic Schools President Steve Glasser said. "Some of the new is in, so when they walk in that first day it looks lot different than it did when they left in May. They get to see and feel some of the new but there is plastic up going to the east, so they'll be very curious of what's behind this plastic."

Trinity students have been in the midst of a construction zone since their previous school building was burned in a fire on March 2, 2014.

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Glasser said he's proud of the resiliency everyone has shown since the fire and smoke engulfed parts of the school more than two years ago, leaving much of the building unusable and forcing students out of the school for the rest of that year.

"People have had to be very flexible and they have been," he said.

Students have had to shift classes to available rooms and to portable classrooms in some cases, but Glasser said Trinity has still been able to provide a quality education to its students through the chaos and construction.

"Something that really stands out during all of this is that we haven't lost a class," he said, "Our curriculum has not been affected at all ... even though we have had to make adjustments for space issues."

Students will not be able to use the auditorium until Oct. 1 as it goes through renovations. That means music classes have to find a temporary space in the school's garage.

Glasser said faculty and staff have had to be inventive in coming up with solutions for some of the challenges they've faced.

He said that from 130 gifts, they have been able to raise $15 million of their $19.5 million goal to pay for the new school construction, and $1 million of that is going into an endowment fund.

Glasser said students will have a chance to tour the east wing the first week of school to show them "what's at the end of the tunnel."
A few alumni have been able to tour the building and Glasser said the feedback has been very good and there have been many "Can I come back to school?" responses.

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Future students had the ability to make some of the decisions about what the new part of the school would like like through polls and a student design team that picked out features.

Glasser said all of those decisions have been made and finalized.

"It's a lot of my plate," he said. "Every desk, every computer, all of those decisions are done. So now it's just monitor the process of the building."

Glasser said he's excited going into the final semester before the new building is open.

"It's going to be quite a fall semester, but I think January is going to be very emotional for everybody," he said. "When we actually open that door on Jan. 3, I think the excitement and the emotions ... it's going to be quite a day."

Related Topics: EDUCATIONDICKINSON
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