SGA Surveyss Students About Gym Hours


Robert Evans, Reporter

The Student Government Association is speaking out as a result of students lobbying for expanded gym hours.

A survey sent to students by the SGA revealed that students are unhappy with hours of the Anderson Sports and Health Center on the weekend, particularly on Saturday.  SGA sent the survey with a mass email Feb. 8

SGA president Catie Becker said complaints came to her attention in recent weeks.

“We actually just got a couple of complaints last week, last Friday during our meeting,” Becker said. “It was brought up by a couple of members of the SGA board, and we just decided to do a survey about it to see if students felt that way.”

Becker said the SGA has received a strong response to the survey.

“We printed out all the results from it. We got over 300 responses so now we just have to go through it.”

She said complaints also involved overcrowding at the facility.

“I’ve heard complaints about the weight room and the gym in general, and with the teams being in there with it just being crowded. I mean, there are certain times a day, you’re going to go there and there are going to be a lot of people at four in the afternoon and you’re just going to have to accept that. And then I’ve heard other complaints about courts not being open because there’s team practice or different things like that,” she said.

Becker thinks students have a legitimate gripe.

” I think that the hours need to be changed so that students can utilize the gym more especially on Saturdays. So, weekend hours, I think. I know it’s a topic I’ve been talking about with my friends for a little while and now that it’s been brought up, I think the hours should be altered a little bit so that students have more of a chance to use the gym. ”

Becker said she does not believe expanding hours will be an easy task.

” I wouldn’t say it would be easy by any means because it would involve a lot of different people – who has to be there, to have to open and take care of it.”

Safety officer Dan Williams, who has worked at the front desk in Anderson for three years, said hours are fair to students and faculty.

“The place is open from seven in the morning until 10 at night – that’s 15 hours,” Williams said. “And on the weekends, I know from experience,  a lot of times when the weather is nice, this place is dead on a Friday night by nine.”

Williams said that sometimes too few students are on campus to justify longer hours.

“A lot of times I can close up at 9:15 or 9:30 because no one is in there, and on the weekends, when the weather is nice, there are a lot of kids that go home. And then you have your regular games — baseball games played on the weekends, lacrosse, soccer. You know, so that kind of compensates from the gym hours because the students can still attend a sporting event on campus.”

He added that extending  gym hours would mean longer shifts for the safety officers.

“Yeah, they (officials) would probably have to look at scheduling for safety office personnel, where they can afford to put another officer for another eight to ten hour shifts.”

He said student workers would not be able to fill the staffing gap.

“The reason the officers are here is in case of an emergency, or an injury or something. We don’t have to dispense an officer. An officer may be down on Machell Avenue in a patrol vehicle checking the dorms. If you have one close by, they can get medical personnel on site, call 911, let the office know what’s going on – something like that.”

Becker suggested that students try to make do for the time being.

“We have one gym – this is where we’re at and you sort of have to work around that. If you’re not going to be able to go around basketball season, then you have to find an alternative and unfortunately there’s really nothing we can change about that in the immediate future to take care of the students who are here right now.”

“It is what it is,” she said.

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