Game room upgrade pondered

For the first time since it was created, the game room on the first floor of Stearns is going to be revamped.

On Feb 18, Jacob Rogenski, member of the SGA and leader of the game room project, held a meeting with students about the renovations.

“We discussed what students would like to see in the Stearns game room,” Rogenski said. “But it was mostly just general improvements, a new pool table would be great… somewhere for students to hang out, maybe watch TV, maybe some furniture down there.”

The funding for this project will come primarily from the SGA, with additional help from Michele Whitmore, associate dean of students.

“I would co-sponsor it with the SGA,” Whitmore said. “If the SGA does contribute some funding towards upgrading the game room, then I would be more than happy to match that or provide as well.”
Whitmore and Rogenski met up about a month ago and discussed ideas for the game room, including putting up student artwork.

“There’s two or three beige-colored walls with very little on them,” Whitmore said. “It would be a great space for students to showcase their work. That’s been a conversation that’s been ongoing for at least the last couple years.”

Rogenski mentioned that he would like to put a TV, possibly with Netflix, in the game room, in addition to some furniture, to make it into a kind of common area for students to hang out.

“I’m just hoping for a place where students feel comfortable to hang out and be able to do things,” Rogenski said. “I just would like to see that space be used better, and for students to go down there and feel like they can go down there to do things.”

Whitmore stated similar hopes for the future of the game room.

“So, really, what I would love to see out of an upgrade in the rec room, in addition to some artwork on the walls… is turning it into an environment where the students want to use it, and they can use it because the equipment is workable,” she said.

It’s been a topic of discussion among students that some of the equipment, the pool table and jukebox in particular, haven’t been working lately, more often than not.

“I think some of the things really want to be replaced,” Rogenski said. “Some of the things are broken and it’s going to be hard to keep them maintained from the state that they’re in… if we can get things fixed and keep it maintained, then that would be good. But if we have to re-purchase things, and then be able to keep them fixed, then that would be good as well.”

Whitmore and Rogenski both expressed concern about the game room equipment being constantly broken due to abuse and misuse.

“What we talked most about, quite honestly, was how to encourage students to respect the equipment more,” Whitmore said. “There are times when the pool sticks are broken or the pool balls are missing or the jukebox isn’t playing the music… and more often than not, those equipment failures are due to abuse of the equipment.”

Rogenski discussed plans to talk to public safety about installing better recording systems in the game room to prevent future abuse of the equipment.

“I’m going to talk to public safety soon … so things don’t get ruined as easily as they have been, because that’s been one of the biggest problems,” he said.

The game room was created in 2008, when the Stearns building was renovated. Whitmore worked with students and the SGA to create the game room, along with the Stearns cinema and the new location of the mail room.

Rogenski emphasized that he is still eager to hear what students want to see changed about the game room.

“I’m certainly looking for more student opinions, too,” he said. “So if any students want to know what’s going on… I’m always happy to be emailed.”