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BSC students vote in favor of new human performance center

Published: Oct 10 2023
BSC students vote in favor of new human performance center  - Photo
Bismarck State College (BSC) has received the student body stamp of approval on a plan to build a human performance center on its campus. On September 27, 2023, more than 82% of BSC students voted in favor of building a new 80,000-square-foot multipurpose student and athletic facility that will be home to Mystics collegiate sports, recreational activities and campus events.
In May 2023, the BSC Student Government Association (SGA) passed a resolution supporting the construction of a new facility and organized a September student vote to increase the current mandatory student fee beginning in Fall 2025 to pay for a portion of human performance center costs. The SGA cited facility accessibility and equitability as the motivators driving their initiative.
“This is a great example of current students and alumni coming together to leave their legacy for future BSC students. Our current students are leaving their legacy with their ‘yes’ vote on a facility that recognizes the legacy of one of our past students,” says 2023-24 BSC SGA president Chris Torres. “A new facility will rectify issues in the BSC Armory and enhance our student experience at BSC.”
A generous lead gift from the Frank and Joanne Bavendick family, coupled with student fees and additional donations, will provide the funds to construct the new $40 million facility.
In 1949-50, Frank Bavendick was a student-athlete for then Bismarck Junior College. Following graduation, he developed and treasured lifetime friendships with BSC and its students. Over the years, he attended many volleyball and basketball games at the BSC Armory and was often known to stop by and chat with the coaches and Mystics athletes – even working out with them in the weight room. During those visits, Frank often talked of a need for a new athletic facility for the growing college. 
The Bavendick family’s donation to this project will ensure that Frank’s dream becomes a reality and that his support for BSC will forever be remembered with a campus facility that will proudly carry his name – the Bavendick Center.
“Frank Bavendick began leaving his legacy here in 1949 through his contributions as a student-athlete. He continues to do so today through his family,” says BSC President Doug Jensen. “We are so appreciative of the Bavendick family’s support for this project and for our students.”
Other contributions from the Bavendick family can be seen around the BSC campus, from the naming of the National Energy Center of Excellence stateroom, the BSC Armory media room and the MDU Resources Community Bowl soccer field. In addition, Frank and  Joanne have contributed to the advancement of students and athletes by donating scholarship funds and supporting humanities programming at BSC.
“It makes me happy to keep my dad’s legacy going,” says Frank’s son, Greg Bavendick. “I grew up right down the road from BSC, and the college has always been a part of my life.”
The Bavendick Center will be built on the BSC campus overlooking the MDU Resources Community Bowl in the space between Werner Hall and the BSC Aquatic and Wellness Center. It will be home to Mystics basketball, volleyball, wrestling, esports competitions, and athlete training areas. The center will also include a student hub, intramural sports, a walking track for students, staff and faculty, rock-climbing walls, and a virtual reality sports simulator. Other uses for the arena space include on-campus graduation ceremonies, entertainment performances, and gym space to host sports camps and tournaments. It will seat approximately 2,000, which is roughly four times larger than the BSC Armory.
While the BSC Armory faces issues as a sports competition venue, it can be repurposed for other uses. Some updates being discussed include a baseball/softball training center, training rooms for track and field, a trap shooting simulator for the Mystics Clay Dusters, and additional space for student intramurals.
The new BSC Bavendick Center is slated to be finished in either 2026 or 2027, depending upon the start date of construction. For more information about donation and room naming opportunities for the Armory updates and Bavendick Center project, please contact the BSC Foundation at 701.224.5700.