On Oct. 29, the Graduate Student Senate and Undergraduate House of Representatives unanimously approved a bill to replace the hardwood floor in the Student Center ballroom and provide fixtures, furniture and equipment for the multipurpose room, a new meeting space in the Student Center.
The bill requested $75,000 for hardwood floor replacement and $50,000 for the new multipurpose room, which will be located in the space of the old Buzzcard Center.
The ballroom floor shows heavy damage. It has suffered scuffs, holes and buckling from wear and tear and moisture exposure. The multipurpose room will offer new space for student organizations.
According to Kim Harrington, Director of the Student Center, two years ago, sections of the ballroom floor began to come up and there were visible gouges and deep cuts throughout the flooring. The floor was sanded, but over time, the thickness wore down, causing sections to separate and pop up, presenting a safety hazard.
Even though the hardwood floor is a financial issue, the Student Center staff still wants to draw activities and events to their building and give students a place to use as reservable space.
“Facilities came to me, offered different options and showed different flaws in the ballroom which led us to purchase the carpet, but the dance groups had legitimate concerns,” Harrington said. “There are no other places on campus like the ballroom [and] I don’t want students to go anywhere else to have activities. I just don’t, but it was a financial situation.”
The Student Center staff acknowledged the students’ desire to keep a hardwood floor in the ballroom.
Various students have held discussions with the Student Center staff about the need to keep hardwood floor in the ballroom.
“The process was very cooperative. There were a number of both senators and representatives that were very involved with the leadership of the Student Center so they could understand the background, usage and best course of action of the flooring in the Ballroom, as well as the intended purpose for the multipurpose room,” said Arren Washington, Graduate Student Body President.
“I think the improvements come at an important time as we strive to maintain the high quality of our aging Student Center, and as we begin having conversations about the creation of a new Student Center in the not too distant future,” said Nick Picon, Undergraduate Student Body President.