Center for Cultural Innovation to possibly receive funding

Proposal to be approved or denied by April


Morgana Carroll

The International Center is a current possible location for the CCI

Morgana Carroll, News Editor

Gov. Jay Inslee’s proposed budget has allotted $6 million for the construction of the Center of Cultural Innovation (CCI) at CWU. 

The Associated Students of CWU (ASCWU) held four open forums at the start of Jan. to inform the public and answer any questions students had about progress on the CCI. 

They were joined by Director of Capital Planning & Projects Delano Palmer and Vice President of Finance and Administration Joel Klucking. Palmer and Klucking gave a presentation about the process of planning a building on campus and how they would attain funding. 

According to Palmer, the state can only supply funding for academic buildings, which is why only $6 million of funding can be supplied by the state budget. Palmer said the $6 million would be used for making offices for diverse departments, such as African Studies and Women’s Gender and Sexuality Studies. 

One proposed idea to fund the rest of the CCI is by refinancing the SURC and taking out more bonds.

According to Klucking, this would mean reevaluating the current amount that CWU still owes to pay back the money it cost to build the SURC, and extending the time they would pay those monthly amounts while also using some of the money to go toward the CCI.

Klucking said they had started to consider this plan in March when the interest rates on construction were lower. Klucking said since then, the interest rates have increased and while it isn’t as likely, it is still an option. 

According to ASCWU Director of Equity and Multicultural Affairs Mariah Minjarez, there is not a finalized location for where the CCI will be, but options include a renovated International Building and a renovated Old Heat Building, among others. 

According to Minjarez, the Equity and Services Council (ESC) and the Diversity and Equity Center (DEC) will be working with administration throughout the process. 

“Those two are looking to start up that partnership because they have a shared mission and values of serving marginalized communities on campus,” Minjarez said. 

According to Minjarez, CWU is aware that the needs of the students won’t be on hold until the CCI is built. Parts of Black Hall will be renovated to currently fit the needs that the CCI will eventually fulfill. What parts of Black Hall will be renovated has not been decided yet.

 This, along with everything else in the governor’s proposed budget, will be accepted or rejected in April.