The Department of Communication and Rhetorical Studies (CRS) is located in recently renovated space on the first floor of Sims Hall on Main Campus. The space includes classrooms; a multi-purpose room with full technology; a computer lab for faculty and graduate students; faculty offices; and a suite for the department's teaching assistants.
In 2012, CRS's facilities in Sims Hall were treated to a major five-month renovation, made possible by a $1 million gift from the Harry T. Mangurian Jr. Foundation Inc. and facilitated by Terry M. Skuse G’75, a member of VPA's Advisory Council. In addition to new carpeting and paint throughout, highlights of the renovation included:
- a large multi-purpose room with full technology, a mobile teaching station, easily movable chairs and tables and ample storage;
- new classroom desks with wheels and cup holders that can adapt to right- or left-handed students;
- a new suite for the department’s teaching assistants, featuring 12 individual workspaces, conference spaces and computer workstations;
- a computer lab for faculty and graduate students;
- frosted glass doors on faculty offices to allow more light into the hallway, with tack boards next to each door for each faculty member’s use;
- an updated main lobby with deacon benches and a cable-ready digital welcome screen featuring news and departmental announcements;
- a comfortable, welcoming seating area in the department’s main office for prospective students, families and other guests that features a bookcase to showcase faculty publications and an additional digital welcome screen; and
- the addition of slim, modern benches to the hallway outside the classrooms, as well as decorative wood paneling with cutouts that allow light from the classrooms into the hallway.