A New Idea for Night Life on Campus

Alicia Stavitski, Reporter

   Students may soon be able to grab a cup of coffee during late night study sessions.

   Students and Student Government representatives have been talking with Kit Foley, Vice President of Student Life, about late night opportunities for coffee and snacks on campus. Advocates suggested remodeling the kitchen in the Henry Student Lounge to create a night-time hangout.

   “No final decisions are made right now, but the Henry Student Lounge is an option,” said Foley.

   Officials are discussing the addition of a coffee vending machine in the Henry Student Lounge, but university president Dr. Thomas Botzman likes the idea of employing students.

   “It would be a better idea to put in something more people run. Vending machines would be easy to try, but they don’t really give people that warm and fuzzy feeling,” said Botzman.

   “We have to look at all of those options, and it could be an opportunity for students to work there as baristas,” said Foley.

   The Cougars Den, the Intermezzo Cafe, and outlets at Passan Hall wouldn’t serve as appropriate spots for a late night coffee shop because those areas are most active during the daytime hours when students want to pick up morning coffee and bagels.

   “They’re not really the kind of space where you hang out for a long time, where you’re just chilling and hanging out with your friends, so they’re not exactly the right set up,” said Botzman.

   Botzman also said the dining room in Banks Student Center may not provide an appropriate space.

   “A lot of it right now is saying what could we do, and what could we make, that would work,” said Botzman. “Part of what we really don’t have here, is this kind of late night hang out coffee shop feel,” said Botzman.

   Officials say the future shop’s hours of operation are also under discussion.

   “The biggest thing I hear, that I constantly hear about food, is not the food itself, but when you can have it. This is something that we have to figure out,” said Botzman.

   Foley said she is seeking student input.

   “We would work with students on a time for the coffee shop to be open. We know students are always concerned that the Cougars Den is only open until 11 p.m.,  so we’re open to the idea of having it available at a later time,” said Foley.

   Nick Vitale, fourth year communications major, thinks having a night time coffee shop is a great idea.

   “I think it’s going to bring a lot of nightlife to the commuter lounge, and people will have a place to relax and drink some coffee,” said Vitale.

   Another student is looking forward to late-night noshing.

   “I think that a thing that’s really missing with the food and beverages that we offer here on campus is that there’s no variety, they’re all the same,” said Joy Mack, third year business major.

    Mack added that she likes the idea of students working as baristas.

   “I feel like, especially at this campus where everyone knows each other, there should be baristas because we really like to get to know the people who do work and serve our food. Just the idea of somewhere where someone can sit down, talk to people, and hangout is a big deal,” said Mack.

   But Alivia Womelsdorf, third year biology/pre-med major, said officials should carefully consider putting the site in a place other than the commuter lounge.

   “I feel like as a commuter, this is the only place that we have on campus. It’s like our own little environment, and there are so many commuters in the lounge as it is. People use the kitchen area to cook meals and use the refrigerators to hold their lunches,” Womelsdorf said.

   Foley said other work needs to be done – including the remodeling of the Banks dining room –  before they make final decisions.

   “We have to get through the dining room things first, where we have to finalize our purchase of furniture and everything that’s going to happen over Christmas, so I would expect that after that, we will be able to sit down and really look into it,” said Foley.

   She said she is interested in students’ suggestions.

   “Before we would make any final decisions, we would want to go back out to students and get some input,” said Foley.