Wesley College to Obtain Old Dover Library - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

Wesley College to Obtain Old Dover Library

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DOVER, Del. -- The long-vacant property where the old city library in Dover was located is being sold to Wesley College --- for $1.

The sale--and price tag--was recently approved by Dover City Council after Rep. Sean Lynn and Sen. Colin Bonini pledged more than $1 million in Community Transportation Fund money from the current budget year and in the coming years to the city government for things like road projects.

Bonini said the deal gives money needed for important transportation improvements and allows Wesley to expand and renovate the decades-old building without the use of public money.

"What drives economic development is an educated workforce and if you can educate them in your community, chances are they'll stay active in that community," he said.

Wesley College President Robert Clark said in a statement that re-using the library would help revitalize Downtown Dover.

"We are very appreciative and excited with the acquisition of the Old Dover Library, and look forward to being able to positively impact our community and downtown by converting the building into a state-of-the-art educational facility dedicated to the teaching and training in the areas of Health Science, STEM, and other high-demand fields of study that would serve the City of Dover, our region, and our state," he said.

The program could be used to help Wesley's expanding Master's of Occupational Therapy program, which more than doubled its number of students since it started in 2016. MOT students are currently using Johnston Hall off South New Street, a building located about about a mile away from campus that's also houses the school's nursing program.

The lack of options sometimes forces MOT students to study in locations like a sensory room used for service learning and occupational therapy. 

MOT Student Kaitlyn Mears said a larger building could mean more productivity.

"We have a couple classrooms that all 53 of us are having to fit into right now," she said.

"In our labs, there's just too many of us, we have to split up," said MOT Student Bhumika Patel.

Dr. Varleisha Gibbs, director of Wesley's Master's in Occupational Therapy program, said being able to use the old library would be a big help for the program and the community. 

"Our goal is not only to educate our students but also to provide what we call service learning to the community."



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