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Rethinking the Hub

March 10, 2010

Michael Wilner
Rethinking the Hub

In lieu of a real student center, ASCMC and the administration have been mulling ideas to improve Emett Student Center –- consisting of the Hub and Faculty Support –- in the short term. Currently, the Hub operates as a pool hall, a television lounge, a study space and an eatery, all compacted in a small, crowded room. “It doesn't do any of these things particularly well,” former Dormitory Affairs Council Chair Ben Kraus ’11 said, after working on the project with Dean Huang. “The goal is to improve each of these individually.” The improvement plan can be seen in three steps: the immediate, short, and long term.

Within the week, students will see flat-screen televisions in the Hub with HD Direct TV. The administration is also looking to replace the tables to create a more cohesive study environment.

Prior to Kravis Center construction, the space currently occupied by Faculty Support West served as the Frazee Room-- a multipurpose room that was significantly underutilized. Vice President for Student Affairs Dean Huang shared, "It has been my plan to return the Frazee Room to a student lounge when the Faculty Support Center leaves in 2011." Faculty Support will be moving to a room underneath the “glass cube” and the current space will become vacant.

One of the three rooms will become a lounge and meeting room for the Robert Day School, which has requested a space for its scholars; the other two will become study lounges, stocked with tables and whiteboards. The space will be open late-night. It will be one of many additional study spaces, as the Kravis Center is slated to have quite a few as well.

"I think that's really what we're most lacking on campus," Kraus said. "We need more study space."

In theory, this reshuffling will extract the study-lounge function of the Hub and allow it to excel purely as a lounge. The space will then see more significant renovations.

Further down the line, CMC’s Master Plan, recently approved unanimously by the Board of Trustees, suggests the complete demolition of Emett, as well as McKenna Auditorium and Bauer Center. An academic building will replace the space across from the Athenaeum. And in Bauer’s place, a more fitting and extraordinary building will become our student center.

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