OCCC committed to helping students navigate

From a car crashing into the front door of the Main Building to tornado damage on various parts of campus, OCCC has experienced significant destruction prior to the beginning of the semester.

This has resulted in parking lot and entrance closures which can make a student’s ability to find their way around campus more difficult.

However, with the help of campus police, wayfinder signs and help desks, students have resources available to help lessen the stress of navigating through the first days of the semester.

Police Chief James Fitzpatrick said students will need to use alternate routes to navigate certain parts of campus.

“Arts and Humanities entry 1 is closed,” Fitzpatrick said. “The Main Building entry 1 is closed due to the kid that drove through the front of the campus.

“So two main areas where people normally come in, from A lot and C lot, are closed right now and we are trying to get them repaired as quickly as possible.”

Fitzpatrick said the best way to get into the Main Building is through the SEM Center entries.

“… Use one of the two SEM Center entries to actually access the Main Building … ,” Fitzpatrick said. “That’s the quickest way to get in there.” As far as traffic goes, he said, students will have some guidance.

“There will be people assisting with traffic,” Fitzpatrick said.

“We try to push [students] to lots D, E, and F on the back ends of campus because we know there’s generally quicker parking to access and get in.”

Fitzpatrick said students can follow a few simple steps to make getting around campus easier.

“[Students] just need to be ready to come to school early for the first week,” he said.

“Allow plenty of time and consider parking in the back because, really, they get to class quicker.”

Student Ambassador Alicia Menz said the Welcome Center, temporarily located on the first floor of the SEM Center, also is available to help students.

“We can help direct them to the right area of the school,” Menz said.

“We can help them figure out what parking lot they want to park in to get to their class on time, and help them figure out where it is.

“We provide maps of the building, maps of the parking lots …,” she said. “If they say ‘I have a class in this room,’ we can help them locate that room on the map and route them in that direction.”

The Welcome Center is normally located inside Main Building Entry 1 but was relocated to SEM Enrty 1 after a car ran through the MB1 entrance.

“There’s just one for right now,” Menz said.

“… We wanted to make it as easy as possible for people to find what they need to find, so it is set up over there so we can do that and we can help facilitate traffic a little better.”

Menz said the Welcome Desk will be able to help students with basic things.

“[Students] can get directions on where to go in the college… .,” Menz said. “But we are kind of limited since it is a satellite Welcome Center and we don’t … have phones.”

Menz said the Welcome Center will be in that area for a while.

“It’s going to be there until we get the main entry open again,” Menz said.

Along with these resources, signs called “Wayfinders” located internally and externally around campus can help students navigate throughout different buildings, said Facilities Management Assistant Director Chris Snow.

“We want the students [who] come … to have the best experience they can,” Snow said.

“We did not want them to be frustrated with not knowing where to park, what building to enter and where to go to once they entered the building.”

For more information, about parking, call Fitzpatrick at 405-682-7891. For more information about navigating around campus, call the Welcome Center at 405-682-7553.For more information about wayfinders, call Snow at 405-682-7575.

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