There are many benefits to living on campus, but many students are saying that it is unfair to the students who commute or do not live on campus. One of the first things that were brought to my attention was the gym.
If you live on campus you have a twenty-four hour fitness center in the student center, but if you do not live on campus then you do not have access to the fitness center. It seems kind of unfair, but you do have a weight room on the top floor of Gressette Gym.
It’s nice, but has mainly free weights so without someone else it can be dangerous. Plus, someone from ABAC staff has to be present, so twenty-four hour access is unavailable, and summer semester gym hours are greatly cut even though you pay the same facility dues like the fall and spring semesters. There is also a computer lab available in the student center, but just like the fitness center it is only for students living on campus.
I spoke with John Clemens, the vice president here at ABAC and director of facilities, and he did clarify some of the reasons. For one, the computer lab and the fitness center were both bought and paid for by the housing department that is why it is strictly for students living on campus. I understand this, but there are many facilities on campus that were not paid by the housing department and only students living on campus are allowed to use them. So why then is no one but the housing department allowed to use the facilities?
ABAC is a college; every part of ABAC should work together as one, not be divided up in to sections. What is next, only the tennis team can be on tennis courts, or only the golf team on the golf course?
If the school looks at one area this way why not all the other areas? The school would not be able to function properly if everyone just worries about themselves.
Clemens did tell me however that there are many plans to add on to Gressette Gym, including a few to add a wellness and fitness center and rock climbing walls. They are even letting students help design the gym, which is a great idea and will be a great addition to the ABAC facilities, but that does not change the fact that every student deserves equal rights to all facilities on campus no matter what their location preferences are.