Mott Community College asking for student & staff input before transforming wooded lot behind Woodside Church

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FLINT, Michigan (WJRT) - (11/03/2017) - When Mott Community College purchased Woodside Church for 625-thousand dollars, it came with a 2.3 acre plot of land with a lot of mature trees on it.

Now they're looking at creating some sort of nature preserve, and they're asking for input from students, staff and faculty.

Michael Spleet, whose property backs up to Mott Community College is excited about the prospect of walking his dog Brody through a slightly more manicured area.

"My dog, he explained, "a black lab, we used to love to go through there, he has no problem hopping over trees, but I'm a little bit older so it's more difficult for me."

Mott Community College is asking for input from students, faculty and staff on what to do with this newly acquired land that came with the recent purchase of Woodside Church.

"It has a lot of mature trees," noted Dawn Hibbard, a Communications Specialist for the college, "right now it has a lot of undergrowth which would have to be cleared out, and at one time there was a seating area here and what we're hearing from students, overwhelmingly. is they would love to have it be a space that they could us for walking, maybe jogging and studying."

Longtime neighbor Lara Nkume is excited about the proposal to put the land to use, as long as its not developed.

"I think it should be trees, grass," she said,"and can have chairs and tables where they can sit and students can have lunch."

The college is also offering cash prizes to students and staff who come up with the best ideas on how to use the land.

No timetable has been set for the project, as the focus right now is on expanding the Early Childhood Learning Center to begin accepting children from zero-to-three years of age:

"It's a game changer," said Hibbard,"It allows them the opportunity to put their child in a safe, healthy environment and be here on campus so if something happens they're right here."

Hibbard says they have new grant funding that's going to allow more parents to apply for scholarship money to help cover childcare costs.

For more information on the student, staff, and faculty contest to come up with ideas for how to use the wooded lot behind the church, just click on the link to the left.

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