Since last spring, we have had construction activity on our cell tower. It's been hard not to notice it, especially when large cranes take up one end of the parking lot! The last work they did this fall was to install a new antenna on the tower. This enables another phone company to send there signals through this location. This should be the end of major construction, at least for a while. Maintenance crews do come by from time to time but usually it takes only a short time.
One of the questions I get from time to time, is "Why does TVA have a cell tower?" Nearly twenty years ago, the school board approved a long term contract to lease a small plot of land on which the cell tower stands. A right of way through our parking lot was included for access. The money from the lease funds student scholarships at TVA and in fact is the only source that is entirely school based for scholarship funds. We do have students who are awarded scholarships from local churches, the Oregon Conference of Seventh-day Adventists, and the North Pacific Union Conference of SDA. All of these outside scholarships are not under school control. Besides the payments for the lease, we also get paid an amount that is determined by the traffic on the tower. Together these two forms of payment amount to about $25,000 per year. For this year, all of this money has been awarded to students in the form of scholarships. In fact, we have more requests than we can fully fund. We would welcome other sources and contributions to our scholarship fund.
At times, a few parents express concern about the cell tower being on our campus and the radio frequencies used. All the research that I have read indicates that any possible effects are very much less than we get on a daily bases from the sun's output of radiation. Additionally, any mass equal to or greater than a sheet of paper would block any high frequency radiation just like uv rays are blocked by a glass window. You don't get sunburned through your house or car windows.
Thank you for your patience during the times when work on the tower reduces our parking capacity! I also appreciate those of you who have parked offsite during our major public events. Your actions have reduced the congestion and parking limitations.
Providing students with a high quality Christian education is very important to us. There are many more students who would like to be here but have financial needs. If you have a heart for Christian education, we would welcome any contributions to our student scholarship fund.