New Dormitory Under Construction At MCC

By  //  February 5, 2013

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BREVARD COUNTY • MELBOURNE, FLORIDA – After graduating from Catholic high school, many students find it difficult to maintain their faith in a college environment.

Construction has started on the new Mary Star of the Sea Newman Hall, a dormitory for Catholic students at Florida Tech on the campus of Melbourne Central Catholic High School. (Image by Nealy Kehres)

However, The Newman Student Housing Fund (NSHF) is working toward helping Christian students on secular campuses remember their religious roots.

The NSHF is a Catholic organization that builds dormitories that provide a faith-based environment on college campuses.

Their most recent project is under construction right now in Brevard County.

The Florida Institute of Technology in Melbourne, has combined efforts with the NSHF to create the Mary Star of the Sea Newman Hall.

Rev. Doug Bailey, Catholic Campus Minister at FIT, has been devising plans for this residence hall for several years.

FIT broke ground Dec. 7 and present to commemorate the event with Bailey was Bishop John Noonan, several local priests and FIT President Dr. Anthony J. Catanese.

Bailey believes the dormitory will greatly benefit the FIT community by housing an additional 140 students.

“With enrollment increasing, FIT will benefit because it will have another residence for students and it will also develop a new connection with the NSFH,” Bailey said.

The dorms will provide space for students to keep in tune with their faith through bible study, liturgy of the hours, rosary prayer and adoration.

“The idea is to build a residence that will be involved in the Catholic formation of the students who live there, and how you do that is by having opportunities for students to enter into the life of the Christian community,” Bailey said.

Bailey felt it was necessary to include the neighboring high school, Melbourne Central Catholic (MCC), in the construction plans.

“The land is right next to MCC,” Bailey said. “So we wanted to include them in the plans, since we are neighbors.”

Michael C. Burke, MCC president, was eager to get involved.

“I think it is a fabulous project, and anything that builds the up the Catholic community of Melbourne benefits us,” Burke said.

MCC and FIT are also collaborating to build a joint youth chapel next to the dormitory after its construction is complete.

Both MCC and FIT students will share the chapel, which Bailey believes will strengthen the relationship between the two institutions.

“I think it will solidify the connection of MCC and FIT even more. It will be a bridge between the two of us,” Bailey said.

The Mary Star of the Sea Newman Hall will be completed by August in time for the beginning of the new school year.