With the school year approaching, Northern State University is working fast to prepare its campus.
Some athletes and other students are already there and more are expected soon. At the same time, there's still construction work needing to get done.
Construction surrounds students as they walk into the cafeteria of the remodeled student center at NSU. Needless to say, more work needs to be done before the rest of the students soon arrive.
"We've had great construction crews to work with and we're really convinced that we're going to be able to make those timelines," NSU president James Smith said.
Smith says work here should be done in a week or so. Work on a Barnett Center expansion on campus is already complete and there are other projects the school is working hard to finish quickly as well.
And that's just on the construction side of things. The school is preparing in other ways as well.
"The opportunity, of course, to have more students living on campus is critically important. We're trying not to be in lobbies and lounges this year," Smith said.
So the school has been adding beds to rooms as residence halls fill. Smith expects 100 percent capacity or higher. That's just one of the preparation projects joining the construction still underway.
Mark Hanley is already on campus for football and he doesn't mind walking around construction crews as they wrap up their work.
"All these additions are just really helping the school and the program out phenomenally," Hanley said.
Smith says the projects will be done when school starts but admits he's been on pins and needles a time or two down this final stretch.
"You do worry about it because students are coming. Orientation is going to start on the day it begins. Football practice in going to start on the day it begins. Soccer practice will begin as planned," Smith said.
And with that not negotiable, neither is the deadline for getting the work done.
When the projects are done, students can still expect to hear construction on campus. Northern has a multi-million dollar addition to its fine arts center in the works. That could start within a year.