BRAVO! Campus grounds recognized for beauty

BRAVO! Campus grounds recognized for beauty

June 19, 2013
Contact: Karen B. Eldridge, Director of Communications

Maryville College has another honor to brag about.

Keep Blount Beautiful’s BRAVO! Award sign went up Wednesday near the entrance gates of the four-year, private liberal arts college.

Moments before, Maryville College President Dr. William T. “Tom” Bogart announced news of the award to members the Physical Plant Department who had gathered for a breakfast in their honor.

“Almost every day – definitely every week – someone will tell me ‘You have a beautiful campus’ or ‘Your people are so nice,’” Bogart told the staff members. “And I always tell them that I will pass their compliments along to the people who actually do the work to make it that way.

“Today I want to say ‘Thank you,’” he said. “Your work is noticed and appreciated.”

BRAVO! Beautification and Building Reuse Awards are presented annually by the Blount County Council of Garden Clubs and Keep Blount Beautiful, a non-profit organization dedicated to litter prevention, waste reduction and beautification. The purpose of the award is to praise local businesses and organizations for their landscaping and beautification efforts. Winners receive large BRAVO! Award signs to display on their property for one year.

Bogart told the Physical Plant staff members Wednesday that 12 businesses and organizations were nominated for landscaping awards in 2013. Of those, only six were selected for awards. Winners were announced June 13 during a luncheon at Smoky Mountain Harley Davidson in Maryville.

The judges, all members of local garden clubs, rate properties based on cleanliness, originality of landscaping, environmental impact and visual effect.

Bogart said the announcement of the award came at a busy – but vitally important – time for the Physical Plant Department. With the summer schedule full of camps and conferences using college facilities, crews put in extra hours so that guests will have a great first impression.

Referencing a two-day conference held June 17-18 at MC for presidents and deans of the Appalachian College Association, Bogart said many were complimentary of the condition of the campus. He said that visitors infer quality, safety and value when they see well-kept grounds.

“What you do matters every single day,” he told the staff members. “You are a big component in our success.”

The 2013 BRAVO! Award follows other accolades related to the College’s grounds and facilities. In April, Crawford House, the College’s 137-year old farmhouse that houses the Mountain Challenge program, received LEED® Gold certification from the U.S. Green Building Council. The house was recognized in November 2012 with the East Tennessee Preservation Award from the East Tennessee Preservation Alliance.

Maryville College also was presented with a Keep Blount Beautiful BRAVO! Award in 2005 and a City of Maryville Greenscape Award in 2006.

According to Bogart, Humphreys Court, a picturesque area in the center of the College's main historic buildings, was the primary location for BRAVO! Award judging. Initially landscaped in 1993 with funding from alumna and board member Diane Humphreys-Barlow '70, the area was dedicated in memory of her parents, Edward G. and Bernice A. Humphreys.

A campus beautification and improvement plan initiated and partially funded by a generous grant from Ruby Tuesday, Inc., in 2002 extended and improved the courtyard.

The Class of 2002 made gifts toward tiered seating for an outdoor classroom.

"The campus beautification and improvement plan made Maryville College a school with incredible curb appeal," Bogart said. "Many donors gave generously to make it possible, but without the lead gifts from Ruby Tuesday, Inc., and Diane Humphreys-Barlow and her brother, James, I would not be accepting this award on behalf of Maryville College."

Eight others recognized

Other 2013 landscaping winners included Asbury Place, Maryville Fire Station No. 3 on Sandy Springs Road, Eberting Orthodontics, RIO180 Church and Washington Cleaners. Businesses recognized for their efforts to reuse/repurpose buildings included Southwind Animal Hospital, TC’s Grill and the Alcoa City Center.

Maryville College is ideally situated in Maryville, Tenn., between the Great Smoky Mountains National Park and Knoxville, the state's third largest city. Founded in 1819, it is the 12th oldest institution of higher learning in the South and maintains an affiliation with the Presbyterian Church (USA). Known for offering its students a rigorous and highly personal experience that includes an undergraduate research requirement, Maryville College is a nationally ranked institution of higher learning that successfully joins the liberal arts and professional preparation. Total enrollment for the fall 2016 semester is 1,197.