Chapel Renovations Set to Begin

by Ryan Bower, Assistant Director of Public Relations

The final chapel service of the year at Cedarville University will take place on Wednesday, April 20, but students, faculty and staff might not find their normal seat that day.

That’s because the long-awaited renovations to the Jeremiah Chapel will begin April 18, when crews begin removing pews in preparation for an overhaul of the facility. The revised auditorium will completed by August and in time for the start of the 2016-17 academic year. 

While it may mean that people might be sitting on the floor during the final two chapel sessions, it also means the start of an exciting new era. 

“I am thrilled to see the project kick off during the final week of chapel,” said Jon Wood, Ph.D., vice president for student life and Christian ministries. “We have been planning and praying for this project for months. It will be exciting to see the transition start as we are finishing chapel for the year.”

The $3 million project will give the chapel much-needed upgrades while adding more seating as Cedarville continues to post record enrollment numbers. The new enhancements mark the facility’s largest renovation project since the Dixon Ministry Center (DMC) opened in 1996.

“The Jeremiah Chapel has been used for 20 years, which is impressive given the fact the facility is used daily for chapel and gets heavy use in the summer by many of our conferences and camps,” said Rod Johnson, associate vice president for operations. “The primary goal [of the renovation project] is to give the facility a completely refreshed look and feel.” 

The renovations, which were approved by Cedarville’s board of trustees in October 2015, will include new carpet, paint, and seats, along with improvements to the facility’s lighting, sound, video and IT systems.

The current bench style pews will be replaced with new theater seats. Energy efficiency will be a point of emphasis, as the house lights will be replaced with eco-friendly LED fixtures, reducing energy consumption and maintenance requirements. 

In addition, room 160 of the DMC, which sits directly behind the back wall of the chapel, will be removed to add an additional 160 seats. The additional seats will bring the total seating capacity of the Jeremiah Chapel to nearly 3,400.

The chapel renovation project is being financed exclusively through private donations, and will not come from student tuition or fees. For more information, including ways to donate, visit cedarville.edu/chapelcampaign.

Located in southwest Ohio, Cedarville University is an accredited, Christ-centered, Baptist institution with an enrollment of 3,711 undergraduate, graduate, and online students in more than 100 areas of study. Founded in 1887, Cedarville is recognized nationally for its authentic Christian community, rigorous academic programs, strong graduation and retention rates, accredited professional and health science offerings, and leading student satisfaction ratings. For more information about the University, visit www.cedarville.edu.