Regents to discuss football training room renovation

The regents will also discuss remodeling a building that will house the Daily.

Than Tibbetts

It will be business as usual for much of the Board of Regents meeting Thursday, some regents said.

Although the meeting might lack a headlining item, several important items will be acted on by the board, as well as policies relating to research secrecy and student mental health.

Regents likely will approve a nearly $950,000 renovation of the Gibson-Nagurski Training and Equipment Room used by the Gophers football team.

Regent David Metzen said the athletics department is funding the project primarily through private donations.

The team is looking to add water therapy to the team’s athletics medicine program with hot and cold water tubs known as plunge pools. Additional space will be renovated for student-athlete rehabilitation and equipment storage.

Regents will also act on a $1.3 million remodeling project of the fourth floor of the University Office Plaza building at 2221 University Ave., which is expected to become the new home of The Minnesota Daily next year.

Justin Scott, the Daily’s president and co-publisher for organizational development and communications, said the newspaper needs to move because the on-campus stadium plans call for the expansion of the road next to the Daily’s current building, at 2301 University Ave.

“(The new space) is a big enough space and it’s open,” he said. “It makes more sense to move now.”

Regent Dallas Bohnsack said student mental health issues will be looked at in the Faculty, Staff and Student Affairs Committee. Specifically, he said, the regents would like to see how the University could become an “early responder” to students’ mental health problems.

“It’s kind of like we’re a family here,” Bohnsack said. “We’ll all be looking out for it.”

The board will hear from Academic Health Center officials on the prevalence of mental health issues and ways the University can help students.

Regents also will look at University employee health care benefits and programs to encourage the wellness of the University’s staff, Bohnsack said.

Regent David Larson said the Educational Planning and Policy Committee will look at partnerships between the University and pre-kindergarten through 12th-grade schools.

The University has had relationships with primary schools for many years, but University officials are looking to strengthen ties in order to better compete in a global marketplace.

“They are really very critical to the future of education in the state,” Larson said. “The University needs to get much more engaged in that process.”