The Game Room inside of the Student Union will close due to plans to make the building a more student-friendly environment. According to the interim Senior Assistant Vice President for Student Life Richard Clark, there is no way for the Game Room to have a long term future in the building.
“Prior to COVID-19, it wasn’t getting a lot of usage,” Clark said. “It was getting quite a bit of usage by a small group of students. There were 25 [students] max, and those students, they will feel the loss.”
In addition to a lack of usage, students and staff of the Student Union raised worries about how clean the space could be kept. Since the room is a closed-off environment with only one door, it would have been extremely difficult for the student workers to keep all areas sanitized.
“All the concerns about high touch points, it’s a very small place, so we would probably have to limit people that go in there,” Clark said. “We’d be wiping things down all the time, and so that didn’t make sense either.”
According to Clark, closing the Game Room is the first-step in the plan to change the location of many of the Student Union offices for student services.
“When I came over here, I thought, ‘Well let’s look at: how do we better serve students, and so where are those student facing offices, how do we provide better services with the existing space that we have without taking anything else away,‘” Clark said.
Clark emphasized that this plan is only in the beginning stages and that they do not yet have a clear budget of how much the move could cost.
“We really haven’t lost anything because we had talked about putting new equipment and new stuff in that room anyway,” Clark said. “Let’s reinvest back in the Student Union.”
The Student Union will also be getting the carpeting replaced on the second first floor, and the furniture will be reupholstered.
“Let’s reinvest back in this area so that this building looks really nice,” Clark said. “Other than the library, this is one of the more busy buildings on campus.”