University facilities manager Bob Sheeran got the call while out to dinner on a Friday night. “They’re coming,” he was told. He knew exactly what those words meant. By early Saturday morning, Jan. 24, Sheeran had a crew inside the University’s new Alumni Center renovating two large empty spaces to make room for a new crop of students—high school students from nearby Summit Country Day School, a private college preparatory school. Part of their school building collapsed, and Xavier donated space for them to use for the rest of the year.
The University spent five days preparing the building for the 350 students—more than a third the size of a typical freshman class. Other classrooms across campus had to be freed up, identification cards made, cars permitted, maps handed out, meals arranged, and computers and phones hooked up.
It was one Catholic institution helping out another. Xavier is donating the space rent-free, but Summit is paying for the improvements. Summit students, meanwhile, are getting a dose of campus exposure, with talks from faculty, experience in college-level science labs and use of the library. It gives new meaning to the term “college prep.”