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Physical Plant Annual Report









Mission Statement The mission of the Physical Plant department is to construct, enhance and maintain the physical environment of The University of Southern Mississippi in a manner that is conducive to the education, research, service and safety of our community.

Core Values Service We are dedicated to satisfying our customers by providing quality service. Motivated by the desire to deliver excellence, we will continue to meet the needs of faculty, staff and students, while maintaining and improving university facilities.

Responsibility We are accountable for our actions. We recognize the immense responsibility we have as individual employees and as a department to be consistent and exemplary in our performance and to hold each other accountable when expectations are not met.

Respect We listen carefully and act with courtesy and kindness. We respect ourselves and show respect to others, regardless of background, status or walk of life.

Integrity We act with honesty and integrity, not compromising the truth. We believe in earning the respect and trust of others by providing professional and reliable service.

Teamwork We believe that teamwork provides greater results. We believe in working together, with our campus customers and with fellow employees, to support the mission of The University of Southern Mississippi and goals of the Physical Plant.

Stewardship We are caretakers of the physical environment of the university. The duties we perform and service we provide will reflect our acceptance of the trust bestowed upon us as stewards of the facilities and grounds of the university.

Physical Plant 118 College Drive #5058 Hattiesburg, MS 39406-0001 Work Control Center Ph: 601.266.4414 Fx: 601.266.4444 Email: Like us on Facebook @ USM Physical Plant. Follow us on Twitter @USMPhysPlant.

""It is important to us that we provide a comfortable, aesthetically pleasing, energy-efficient campus for all to live, work and learn."" Dr. Chris Crenshaw

Director, Physical Plant

Table of Contents Forward


Organizational Chart


By the Numbers


Accomplishments and Highlights Facilities Planning and Construction


Engineering Department


Electrical Department


Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning (HVAC)


Infrastructure and Transportation


Custodial Services


Campus Landscape/Grounds


Athletics Grounds




Office of Sustainability




Energy Report FY 2012


In the News Energy Efficiency Initiative


Tree Campus USA


Giving Back


Opportunities/Challenges and Goals


Forward The information included in this report is designed to provide an overview of the progress and accomplishments of the University Physical Plant during the 2011–12 fiscal year. The Physical Plant endeavors to serve our campus community through the four tenets of the university mission, which are as follows: • • • •

Providing Providing Providing Providing

a climate for academic success connections with community image development for healthy minds and bodies

We recognize that all who traverse our campus are our customers, and we pride ourselves on serving their needs through responsive, caring and quality workmanship. It is important to us that we provide a comfortable, aesthetically pleasing, energy-efficient campus for all to live, work and learn. My hope is that the information that follows will provide an example of the breadth of our work and the impact of our efforts to improve the living-learning environment of our campus. Managing more than four million square feet of building space and 315 acres of university grounds can be a daunting task. However, I am confident that the information within this booklet will confirm our commitment to making Southern Miss a better place for all of us. To the Top!

Chris Crenshaw, Ph.D. Director, Physical Plant




Dr. Chris Crenshaw

associate director campus projects & development

Joel Lucero

assistant director for special projects

David Bounds

associate director for campus operations & fire/safety

assistant director for marketing & campus Relations

associate director for business operations

assistant director for planning & space utilization

Michelle Shinall

Andrea Phillips

Rita Hailey-Burks

Work Control Center


Custodial Services

assistant director of sustainability

Haley McMinn

Rodger Jackson

Energy Management

Grounds Division

Construction Projects

Transportation Services

Human Resources

Building Trades

Environmental Services


Mechanical/ Plumbing Services

Carpenter/Painter Services

Electrical Services

Fire/Safety Division




2011-12 Total Work Requests



Accepted Work Requests



Rejected Work Requests



Preventative Maintenance Assignments



Total Non PM Work Orders

8,161 9,528 315 Acre Campus

60 Student and Community Support Facilities

42 Academic and Administrative Buildings

13 Athletics Department Facilities

17 Physical Plant Facilities 4

Accomplishments and Highlights To fulfill the Physical Plant mission of constructing, enhancing and maintaining the physical environment of The University of Southern Mississippi, the following projects and improvements have been completed:

Facilities Planning and Construction Completed Projects • Pete Taylor Park renovations and additions completed • N. 31st Avenue water main replaced • N. 31st Avenue and Pearl Street ADA sidewalks installed • Agora/International Building renovated • School of Construction lab upgraded • Marsh Auditorium renovated • Trent Lott Center Fountain repaired • Johnson Science Tower distilled water lines replaced • Forrest County Hall/iTech room 207 renovated

Projects Under Construction • Scianna Hall/College of Business • College Hall • N. 31st Avenue pedestrian corridor • Lake Thoreau Building and infrastructure • Energy reduction retrofits • Electrical systems upgrades


Accomplishments and Highlights Engineering Department The Engineering department played an integral part in the design and planning of the following projects: • Electrical systems upgrade • Scianna Hall/College of Business construction • College Hall renovation • Lake Thoreau infrastructure • Transformer change out at the Aubrey K. Lucas Administration Building • Negotiated the exchange of electrical facilities at Lake Thoreau with Southern Pines Electric Power Association • Coordinated with Mississippi Power change out of insulators to standby on the power poles at the substation for football games

Electrical Department • Installed new lamps and capacitors on all the concourse lights at Reed Green Coliseum • Theater and Dance Building exit lights replaced with LED fixtures • Retrofitted streetlights on M.K. Turk Circle to metal halide to eliminate combination of yellow and white lights • Serviced and changed oil in all Hattiesburg campus generators, including 43 stationary and 10 portables • Reconditioned two and changed one transformer in McLemore Hall transformer vault due to failure of the primary bushing • Thermal imaging completed and reconditioned transformers on the R.C. Cook Union and M. M. Roberts Stadium transformer vaults • Replaced transformer at the Aubrey K. Lucas Administration Building and pulled in new set of cables in the spare conduit to prepare for electrical upgrade • Completed extensive lightening damage repairs at Payne Center • Upgraded generator for Cook Library to account for the additional computer loads • Installed additional computer circuits in Cook Library • Changed sub-feed panel breaker in Cook Library due to water damage • Installed more than 40,000 feet of wire and replaced more than 10,000, four-foot fluorescent lamps and more than 1,000 ballasts


Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning (HVAC) • Designed and implemented the replacement of the Mannoni Performing Arts Center chiller • Designed and implemented the complete replacement of the mechanical utilities within the Bobby Chain Technology Center, including piping, boilers, controls, pumps, exhaust fans and drives • Upgraded the heating boilers at the R.C. Cook Union to high-efficiency condensing boilers • Replaced defective chilled water coil in HPR building first floor air handler and upgraded controls from pneumatic to digital • Replaced defective chilled water coil and upgraded controls at Mannoni Performing Arts Center second floor • Replaced chilled water control valve at McCain Library main air handler unit • Checked and repaired leaks at chilled water plant at Thames Polymer Science • Replaced defective 10-inch cooling tower bypass valve at Thames Polymer Science cooling tower • Replaced defective gearbox on number three cooling tower at Cook chiller plant • Repaired various purge units on chillers across campus • Performed preventive maintenance actions on equipment across campus • Replaced second floor air handler at the Honor House • Replaced gearbox, fan blade and hub on north cooling tower at Panhellenic chiller plant • Replaced control components damaged by lighting at Panhellenic chiller plant • Replaced damage variable frequency drive on Roberts Hall chilled water pump • Replaced damage fan coupling on cooling tower at McCarty Hall Plant • Replaced leaking domestic hot water storage tank at Hillcrest Hall • Identified problematic areas in Century Park chiller plant and participated with contractor in repairs • Performed preventive maintenance on 3-D Arts chiller and put back online • Participated in the design and implementation of the boiler replacement at Thames Polymer Science building, resulting in large savings in gas and electric services • Added hot water set back control valves to digital controls at McCarty Hall, Liberal Arts Building and at several other buildings • Completed the replacement and upgrade of the Data Center HVAC system • Converted air handler fan speed control to digital at Liberal Arts Building • Performed preventive maintenance of air units in the Aubrey K. Lucas Administration Building to include open and cleaning interior parts, changing belts and cleaning strainers • Checked and repaired leaks on Hickman Hall chillers • Cleaned air ducts and air conditioned units, sealed and painted air handler rooms at first floor, west end, Marsh Hall Fine Arts Building • Cleaned all air ducts throughout McCain Library • Cleaned chilled water strainers in CBA • Rebuilt starter contactors and auxiliary contacts in Hickman chiller panel • Cleaned drains in large walk-in air handler on the south side of R.C. Cook Union • Implemented holiday shut down of HVAC equipment across Hattiesburg campus • Responded to all call outs to meet heating and air conditioning needs across campus


Accomplishments and Highlights

 Infrastructure and Transportation Services Duties and accomplishments of Infrastructure Services include, but are not limited to, building and repairing sidewalks, building and repairing handicap ramps, building and repairing parking lots, installing speed bumps, bollards installation, sweeping university roads and parking lots, and making various parts of the university safer and more handicap-accessible. Completed projects include the following: • Replaced 30 feet of sidewalk at the Payne Center • Installed handicap walkway and footings for wall and flowerbed at Bobby Chain Technology Center • Poured two handicap ramps at Scott Hall • Exposed aggregate handicap ramp and poured around transformers for wall at Seymour’s • Poured 100 feet of sidewalk and entrance with handicap ramp at Jones Hall • Poured handicap sidewalk at Beedie Smith Clinic • Poured curb, gutter and two handicap sidewalks at Honor House • Poured driveway at McLemore Hall • Poured parking spot at Stout Hall • Poured sidewalk and downspout drain at George Hurst Building • Poured 150 feet of sidewalk with two handicap ramps at Joseph Greene Hall • Poured patio, walkway, bike area and light pole at Owings-McQuagge Hall • Poured 30 feet of sidewalk with handicap ramps on Montague Boulevard • Poured 60 feet of sidewalk at Phi Kappa Tau • Poured 20 feet of sidewalk with drain at Pi Kappa Alpha • Poured entrance to building with drain at Alpha Tau Omega • Poured two handicap pads for bridge at Cedarbrook Apartments • Poured 30 foot by 10 foot sidewalk between Liberal Arts Building and International Building • Poured six foot by 10 foot patch of concrete on sidewalk at College of Nursing • Replaced 130 foot by four foot uneven sidewalk and added handicap access to Kate Hubbard House Transportation Services Duties performed by Transportation Services include repair and maintenance of all university vehicles, chainsaws, weed eaters, lawn mowers and heavy equipment. This division is also responsible for decaling and numbering university vehicles, oil changes, flat tire repair, fueling and all other necessary repairs to approximately 235 university cars and trucks and nearly 245 non-vehicles including golf carts, mules, tractors, electric trucks, lawn mowers and all heavy equipment.


Custodial Services As the largest division of the Physical Plant department, Custodial Services maintains the overall cleanliness of all academic facilities. Some of our accomplishments include the following: • Responded to all emergency cleanup requests, i.e. storms and flooding • Pressure-washed exterior of buildings and sidewalks • Cleaned graffiti from campus walls and sidewalks • Cleaned Athletics facilities after every sporting event, including football, basketball, baseball, softball, soccer and tennis • Cleaned Bennett Auditorium and other buildings in preparation for Founders’ Day • Stripped and waxed atrium of the Trent Lott Center • Cleaned lower west side of M.M. Roberts Stadium for Brett Favre 7-on-7 Football Camp • Stripped and waxed wood floors and tile after renovation of HPR Building room 105 • Stripped and waxed floors, cleaned and dusted bathrooms and offices in Bond Hall east • Cleaned inside and outside windows of Bond and Forrest County Halls • Stripped and waxed floors, cleaned carpet and dusted after renovations at McCain Library • Cleaned stage and lobby area, dusted, stripped and waxed floors following Marsh Hall renovation • Cleaned grounds from Hillcrest parking lot to Hardy Street following Mardi Gras parade • Cleaned Reed Green Coliseum before and after Petal Percussion Camp Competition • Stripped and waxed floors and cleaned entire DuBard School building in preparation for donor visit • Cleaned Reed Green Coliseum before and after NCAA basketball tournament • Cleaned lower west side of M.M. Roberts Stadium before and after Adalius Thomas football event • Cleaned lower west side of M.M. Roberts Stadium before and after SAE Football Charity Bowl • Stripped and waxed floors and cleaned entire building and parking lot before J.B. George Building ceremony • Cleaned Bennett Auditorium for Fall Convocation • Cleaned Baseball Complex following installation of new bleachers • Had 100% participation in donations to Shafer Center for Crisis Intervention through United Way • Donated Christmas gifts to Orphanage of Wiggins, Miss. • Participated in Breast Cancer Awareness month


Accomplishments and Highlights Campus Landscape/Grounds As the largest division of the Physical Plant department, Custodial Services maintains the overall cleanliness of all academic facilities. Some of our accomplishments include the following: • Restored Rose Garden to nationally accepted standards by performing all steps normally done over three-year cycle in one month • Enhanced Lake Byron by running irrigation to the island, planting 20-foot weeping willow tree, adding a flower bed at the south tip, placing aquatic plants in the water and hibiscus around the light base • Raised level of maintenance of historic area to manicured and crisp, which included planting three times the amount of color once seen there • Retooled and landscaped the entire Power House courtyard, while maintaining the intended New Orleans style • Re-established a tree maintenance schedule--through building of trust and the Tree Management Task Force, set up a protocol for removal of dead or hazardous trees • Planted new landscape in conjunction with ADA ramp improvements at Bobby Chain Technology Center • Revamped entire commons between Stout Hall and Forrest County Hall--made the otherwise dimly lit and uninteresting area a bright, vibrant and colorful shaded seating location • Brought several formerly neglected buildings and areas back into heavy landscape rotation, including Walker Science Building, Ogletree Alumni House, Fritzsche-Gibbs and McCain Library plaza • Restored the landscape between the service drive and Hwy 49 by replacing irrigation and removing all leaves, debris and well-hidden trash • Converted landscape and irrigation plans to electronic format • Mulched almost all of campus using high-quality, but less expensive mulch that migrates less into the drains during storms • Started integrated pest management program, which included using proper soil prep, amending with organics and mulching. This program greatly reduced our dependence on pesticides and herbicides, which leads to better overall health of the campus greenscape.


Athletic Grounds • Applied cultural practices, chemical applications, fertilization and irrigation practices to all Athletic fields and facilities • Renovated areas on baseball and softball fields to improve slope and drainage • Added clay and laser-graded baseball infield and rough-graded softball infield • Renovated baseball mound to proper NCAA specs • Installed and managed new landscape beds around Athletics facilities • Installed irrigation system and laid new sod to improve quality of the grounds at the Accelerator plant • Completed renovation of softball bullpen to improve quality and drainage • Painted 100-year Athletics anniversary logos on Carlisle–Faulkner Field • Prepared all Athletics fields for practice and games according to NCAA specs


Accomplishments and Highlights Stores • Team Support – staff worked together to provide good customer service • Customer Satisfaction – effectively met customer needs in timely manner • Inventory – provided a sufficient amount of inventory for our customers • Price – worked to provide the best price for our customers

Office of Sustainability • Expanded the EcoEagle Bike Program to 50 bikes in fall 2011 • Provided special move-in recycling for freshman and upperclassman move-in days • Reported to the ACUPCC an updated Greenhouse Gas Emissions Inventory showing a decrease in overall CO2 equivalent of 3,324 metric tons. This equals the CO2 emissions from 7,013 barrels of oil consumed. • Sponsored first Southern Miss Campus Sustainability fieldtrip--Hosted a group of students from Mount Olive Attendance Center. Plans are to expand this community outreach effort. • Implemented first game day recycling program--currently revamping the program with plans to expand from football to other sports on campus • Formed the first formalized student organization geared toward sustainability: Sustainability Advocates of Southern Miss • Released new Office of Sustainability website • Assisted in the learning outcomes of students working on sustainability projects in CMS 320 and a Student Think Center class called “Learning by Design” • Named to the Princeton Review’s 2012 list of top green colleges in the nation • Worked in collaboration with Recreational Sports in the development and implementation of the Southern Miss Farmers’ Market, purposed to serve campus populations and surrounding communities • During the RecycleMania national competition, Southern Miss recycled 108,180 pounds of materials in eight weeks. This is the equivalent of reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 163 metric tons of CO2 equivalent or taking 32 vehicles off the road. • Implemented a successful Earth Week celebration--events included the following: EcoEagle Lecture: Food Access and Security, Dr. Carol Connell EcoEagle Workshop Series: Repurposing Old Products (two-day workshop) Earth Fair: Consisted of a table/booth educational venue with more than 20 vendors, both on and off campus OCSL Clean Water Project: OCSL sponsored a kayak river-cleaning trip. • Assisted the Office of Community Service Learning on the annual Project Serve trip to Guelph, Ontario, where students learned and engaged in the sustainability practices that were happening on campus and in the surrounding communities • Assisted with and spoke at more than 15 programs for on-campus residents • Developed Office of Sustainability monthly newsletter • Featured in the July Business Officer Magazine in an article about building support for sustainability efforts on campus


Fire/Safety The primary function of the Fire/Safety Division is to ensure the safety of faculty, staff and students in all university facilities. • Installed fire alarm system at the Payne Center • Installed a magnetic lock system at the Payne Center • Installed a fire/security system at the president’s home • Installed a fire alarm system at Center for Child Development • Installed fire sprinkler systems throughout four residence halls • Systematically inspected all fire suppression and alarm systems • Inspected all campus fire extinguishers • Insured compliance with state and federal ADA regulations for all facilities


Southern miss Energy Report FY12 The University of Southern Mississippi is fully engaged and committed to both the American College and University Presidents’ Climate Commitment (ACUPCC) signed by Dr. Martha Saunders in 2008 to reduce greenhouse gases and Senate Bill 2821 that was mandated by the Institute of Higher Learning (IHL) to reduce energy usage by 30% by the end of fiscal year 2015. To meet these challenges, the University established an Energy Management Team (EMT), which consists of the superintendent of HVAC, an energy management control specialist, an electrical engineer and an energy consultant. Charged with developing an Energy Management Program (EMP) to analyze, review and recommend changes needed to reduce energy consumption and greenhouse gases, the EMT actively monitors energy usage each day and meets on a monthly basis to review energy issues. The EMT focuses on utility services (electric, gas and water) for the entire campus community. On a daily basis the energy management control specialist reviews chiller and heating plant readings for any alarm status or potential problems. Each morning HVAC technicians, under the guidance of the superintendent of HVAC, tours all power plants for proper operation status and then logs all findings. Monthly consumption readings are taken and compared against historical data for month-to-month and year-to-year continuous improvement. When problems are found, adjustments are made as-needed, and potential problems are analyzed by the EMT for the quickest and best-case scenario solutions. The Energy Management Program has had great success over the last three years in reducing both energy consumption and energy costs. Since fiscal year 2009, educational and general (E & G) gas has been reduced by 34.4%, electric reduced by 21.1%, and campus wide MMBTUs (Million Metric British Thermal Units) reduced by 25%, while campus square footage increased by 4.93%. These consumption reductions reduced E & G utility costs, fiscal year 2010 through 2012, by $5,450,744, of which $3,709,971 was from consumption reductions, and $1,740,773 in price reductions, of which 50% was realized from negotiating new rates. Below is a partial list of operational actions taken and projects implemented to achieve these savings, as well as year-to-year continuous improvement results: Operational • Adjusted downward the temperature of domestic hot water units and heat units at 78 campus locations • Upgraded and reprogrammed 10 building energy management systems • Installed time clocks on air handlers in 18 buildings for night and weekend setbacks • Installed programmable thermostats in 12 buildings • Repaired water leaks in 10 cooling towers and 17 water meters • Reprogrammed boilers and lowered hot water temperature in Polymer Science Building, resulting in a 53.1% drop in MCF usage • Evaluated Reed Green Coliseum needs, programming seven ceiling air handling units “off” resulting in a 38.4% drop in electrical KWH usage


Projects • Verve units installed in Cook Library addition, resulting in a 29.3% drop in electrical KWH usage • Replaced steam boilers with clear fire condensate boilers in Bobby Chain Technology Center, resulting in a 74.8% reduction in MCF (gas) usage • Installed VFD drives in Bobby Chain Technology Center, resulting in a 19.4% drop in KWH usage • Currently in process of power plant upgrades and installation of Building Automated Controls (BACs). Items included in upgrade are valves, VFDs, heat plate exchanger, and set points for both hot and cold water.

Continuous improvement year-to-year FY09 to FY10 è

Gas reduced

14 .4 %, electric reduced 8.2 %,

water increased

FY10 to FY11 è

Gas reduced

13.4 %, electric reduced 2.9 %,

water reduced

FY11 to FY12 è

Gas reduced

15.1 %,

electric reduced

31.1 %

33.8 %

10.3 %, water reduced 38.7 %

The Southern Miss Energy Management Team has a number of challenges for the FY13 academic year: • Fully implementing and controlling the new BACs and adjustments to daily operations of the upgraded power plants. This process will take a few months to learn the new technology and train HVAC personnel accordingly. • Better operations and consumption control at McCarty Chiller Plant (new buildings added over past few years as well as new College of Business Building under construction). We will be able to address this issue once the new upgrades for this plant are completed and BAC software fine-tuned. • Continuous year-to-year improvement with changes in HVAC technicians and other construction projects on campus. Byron will be replacing a key HVAC technician and will lead the new individual through the learning process. The demolition of Scott Hall, Vann Hall and half of Bond Hall will present some challenges until the new power plant for Century Park South is completed and the remaining half of Bond Hall connected. Energy Savings Account (ESA) As evidenced above, the Southern Miss Energy Management Plan has been very successful in reducing E & G utilities over the past three years. The Physical Plant department’s ESA account, after a deposit from FY12 savings, has a balance of more than $600,000 to be used for more energy efficiency measures.


in the news Energy Efficiency Initiative Results in Savings of Approximately $2 Million BY DAVID TISDALE

Byron Ellis of the Southern Miss Physical Plant uses an operator interface touch screen to communicate with a water chilling machine, allowing him to collect information such as oil and refrigeration pressures and electrical data such as voltage and amperages, among other information. The state-of-the-art technology helps the Southern Miss Physical Plant in its efforts to reduce utility costs on the Hattiesburg campus. (University Communications photo by David Tisdale)

Through state-of-the-art technology and smart energy use, The University of Southern Mississippi has cut energy consumption costs on its Hattiesburg campus by nearly $2 million in the past year. The savings are the result of an initiative by the Southern Miss Physical Plant to further maximize energy efficiency and reduce utility expenditures, keeping with one of the university’s four strategic priorities-healthy minds, bodies and campuses, said Physical Plant Director Dr. Chris Crenshaw. “In the past three years, we’ve made a dedicated effort to impact utility consumption on campus,” said Crenshaw, who noted that $8 million is budgeted annually for utility expenses at the university. “The result is significant savings as we continue to solidify ourselves as a role model for energy efficiency and environmental responsibility.” Facilities across campus, including those designated for academics, athletics, residence life and dining were assessed at the beginning of the process to determine amounts of energy used, cost and the energyuse infrastructure in each building. The three-phase plan began with the assessment, followed by the implementation of new technology and energy use adjustments and concluding with an outcome analysis. Crenshaw emphasized that in addition to this most recent initiative, the university continually reviews utility data, targets “hot” spots (high-energy consumption areas of campus) and makes adjustments that have minimal impact on building occupants and materials. Highlights of the university’s recent energy efficiency efforts include the following: • Installation in several campus facilities of new, state-of-the-art energy meters to improve tracking of energy consumption • Installation of Variable Frequency Drives (VFDs) that adjust energy use in buildings based on demand • Installation of Energy Management Systems (EMS) that adjust energy settings on nights and weekends when some buildings are unoccupied • Installation of new energy-efficient boilers


An example of the progress made is the 20 percent drop in electricity use in the Chain Technology Building, and Crenshaw said he’s received positive feedback from its occupants. “With these improvements, which also impact air conditioning, temperatures in these buildings are more stable, consistent and comfortable than in recent years.” The improvements also enhance the college’s research environment, said Lynn Landrum, director of science safety for the university. “I’m pleased the Physical Plant is taking on this initiative,” he said. “To meet our goal of being a premier research university, our work here in the college has to be conducted in high-quality, environmentally efficient laboratory settings so that they (faculty and students) can do the type of research we expect of them.” Vigilance on the part of students, faculty and staff in making more efficient energy use choices also drives costs down. Making sure lights are turned off in empty rooms, powering down computers after use and taking advantage of outdoor light through windows are among the many simple steps that make a difference, Crenshaw said. “We (Physical Plant) have a team of professionals dedicated to monitoring consumption and implementing savings strategies, and they’re doing a great job,” he said. “In addition, members of the campus community are more cognizant than ever of what they can do to help us meet energy-efficiency goals. It takes a team effort, and that’s what we’re seeing.” The next phase in the university’s plans to save on utility costs is a $2 million energy retrofit program through the state’s Bureau of Buildings. For the last nine months, on-site reviews of almost every piece of equipment in targeted areas of campus contributed to the development of an energy use strategy. Besides Chain Technology, other buildings slated for energy-efficiency upgrades and adjustments include Owings-McQuagge Hall, Fritzche-Gibbs Hall, Joseph Greene Hall, George Hurst Building, Johnson Science Tower, Forrest County Hall, College Hall, Stout Hall, Bennett Auditorium, McLemore Hall, Southern Hall, Kennard-Washington Hall, Aubrey K. Lucas Administration Building and the Polymer Science Research Center. “We applaud the work of the Physical Plant to reduce energy costs and to increase the efficiency of our facilities,” said Dr. Ann Blackwell, dean of the College of Education and Psychology, which is located in Owings-McQuagge Hall. Another campus-wide energy-efficiency project to be supported by the Bureau of Buildings will see $750,000 in upgrades in the near future to infrastructure impacting electricity consumption. In addition, Cook Library will see the installation of energy-efficient lighting equipment with an estimated payback period of just 18 months. “It’s exciting to see the savings resulting from the work we’re doing,” Crenshaw said. “Going forward, we’ll continue implementing new energy-efficiency technology and strategies as they’re developed.”


in the news Sustainability Efforts Earn Southern Miss Tree Campus USA Designation BY DAVID TISDALE

The University of Southern Mississippi Hattiesburg campus recently earned a Tree Campus USA designation from the Arbor Foundation. The campus has approximately 60 species of trees. (University Communications photo)

The University of Southern Mississippi’s efforts to advance a culture of sustainability continue to bear fruit, as it recently earned a Tree Campus USA designation. The Tree Campus USA program is the product of a joint partnership between the Arbor Day Foundation and Toyota North America Inc. Universities and colleges whose leaders embrace tree conservation and engage students, faculty and staff in that same endeavor are eligible for the recognition. During 2011, the Arbor Day Foundation and Toyota helped campuses throughout the country plant 30,000 trees, and Tree Campus USA colleges and universities have invested more than $22 million in campus forest management. The program began in 2008 and is supported by a grant from Toyota. “This designation is a testament to our commitment to managing and protecting our tree population, which is central to the beauty of our campus,” said Southern Miss President Martha Saunders. “It is my hope that future generations of faculty, staff and students share this same commitment.”


Southern Miss met five core standards for sustainable campus forestry required for the Tree Campus USA designation, including the following: • Establishment of a Tree Advisory Committee • Evidence of a campus tree-care plan • Dedicated annual expenditures for its campus tree program • An Arbor Day observance • Student service-learning projects “Your entire campus should be proud of this sustained commitment to environmental stewardship,” said Arbor Day Foundation Chief Executive John Rosenow in a letter to Saunders congratulating the university. The Arbor Day Foundation cites many advantages to a healthy tree population. In addition to aesthetics, trees also provide a vital component to campus infrastructure and landscaping; create a welcoming environment for students, faculty, staff and alumni; provide cool shade and quiet places for study or reflection; and keep the air cleaner and reduce cooling costs, among others benefits. “Students throughout the country are passionate about sustainability and community improvement, which makes the emphasis on well-maintained and healthy trees so important,” said Rosenow. “Achieving Tree Campus USA recognition sets an example for other colleges and universities and allows students a chance to give back to both their campus community and the community at-large.” Among the leaders in helping the university secure the designation was Kenneth Rhinehart, an adjunct professor of environmental science at the university. Along with students in his Environmental Science (ESC 302) class, Rhinehart began an inventory in spring 2010 of trees on the Hattiesburg campus, where he says there are approximately 60 species of trees. Rhinehart also serves on the university’s Tree Management Task Force, which serves as a resource for advisement and recommendation regarding the addition, removal and management of the university’s tree population. “We’re a state gifted with a precious resource, and our campus is a fine example of that with a wonderful assortment of trees that enhance it aesthetically, environmentally and economically,” Rhinehart said. More information about the Tree Campus USA program is available at


in the news Giving Back Southern Miss Custodial Staff Collect Donations for Troops Serving Overseas BY DAVID TISDALE

Inspired by the sacrifices made by American soldiers, members of The University of Southern Mississippi Custodial Services staff recently collected non-perishable food items, drinks, bottled water and paperback books to send to troops serving overseas. Led by custodial staff foreman Patricia McFarland, the donation drive included contributions from members of the Physical Plant staff as well as Aramark, which provided 10 cases of bottled water, and other university employees from across the Hattiesburg campus. Physical Plant vendors Anthony Jordan and Russell Ruffin also contributed to the cause. The weeklong collection amounted to “a truckload” McFarland said. “Our staff here at the Physical Plant and others on campus really came through for us with this effort, and we also appreciate Aramark and Anthony and Russell for their generosity,” she said. “We can’t forget about our soldiers. How can you not want to help them when they are putting their lives on the line?” The Southern Miss custodial staff frequently supports a variety of charitable efforts, said Superintendent of Custodial Services Mike Dozier. “Our staff is really good about coming through for those in their time of need; they give so freely,” he said. “When anyone needs help, they answer the call.” Custodial staff member Mary Griffin praised McFarland for consistently leading efforts to help others and was especially motivated to help with the drive for contributions for American soldiers. “I have a niece and a nephew serving in the military so it means a lot to me to do this for our troops,” she said. Southern Miss Physical Plant Director Dr. Chris Crenshaw concurred. “We’re grateful to the men and women who protect our country and keep us free,” he said. "Their sacrifice is so much more than any of us can imagine. The Physical Plant custodial staff, along with all of the donors to this effort, saw this as an opportunity to say ‘thank you.’”


Opportunities/Challenges and Goals Challenges and Hurdles While our Physical Plant accomplishments are varied and far-reaching, we continue to have many challenges as we work toward our goals for the coming years, some of which include the following: • Lack of financial resources • Lack of human capital – Down more than 60 employees compared to peer institutions • Lack of legislative funding • Spending an average of $92 per acre on landscape compared to $250 per acre by peer institutions and $500 per acre nationally • Aging building inventory – 69% of buildings 25 years or older • Escalating deferred maintenance costs • Lack of Physical Plant office space • Increase in litter and trash and decrease in personal responsibility

Goals and Opportunities In spite of the challenges, we will continue to serve with excellence and strive to meet the needs of all faculty, staff and students. We look forward to achieving the following goals as we abide by our mission of constructing, enhancing and maintaining the physical environment of The University of Southern Mississippi: • Updating of the university master plan • Development of a bike and pedestrian plan • Development of a vehicular traffic flow plan • Construction of a new College of Nursing • Renovation of Southern Hall • Completion of Scianna Hall/College of Business • Completion of Century Park South • Enhancement of campus landscape to compete for the top 10 most beautiful campuses • Continued improvement of energy savings and sustainable efforts • Continued effort and improvement on customer response and quality workmanship


The Physical Plant would like to thank our campus community for their continued support, patience and understanding as we continue to enhance the experience each of you has on our campus, build facilities that will support future research, and serve the needs of all who call Southern Miss home.


UC 68900.5058 5.13

Southern Miss Physical Plant Annual Report - FY 11-12  
Southern Miss Physical Plant Annual Report - FY 11-12