Spending Time in the New Lounge


Brad Augenstein

Brad Augenstein, Reporter

Last issue, I talked about the places I spend most of my time on campus, although there are not many. I ended the column saying I should spend time in the Henry Student Lounge, which is sometimes also called the commuter lounge. Since I’m a commuter and have a lot of spare time here, I decided to try out this new spot.

It’s important to point out that, since last semester, the lounge has been remodeled. From the short amount of time I looked in the old lounge, I could remember a few things, like couches and a foosball table. The main issue, for me, was the lounge itself felt outdated and was not very much like a “lounge.”

However, the improvements made this semester were better than I expected. It now feels more like a lounge. Everything is modernized and it doesn’t feel like an old building anymore. It looks like a totally new building on the inside.

There’s also a lot more seating. There’s a big TV on the wall with seats looking toward it, plus other seats toward the walls and some outside, as well. Seats are a big deal to me. If I’m not comfortable in my chair, there’s a possibility my day will be ruined. Luckily, the seats in the lounge are pretty good.

In addition to one TV on the wall in the middle of the room, there are four other TVs across the wall behind the bar and one on the back wall.

These TVs are the highlight of the new lounge. You can watch live TV or streaming services like Netflix. One issue, however, is the controls.

A monitor on the wall has controls on it. From what I could figure out, the controls are for the main TV with some extra options. There’s an option that says “fireplace,” but I didn’t hit it because I felt like if I did the building would somehow burn down.

The monitor is pretty much a remote but the issue is with its placement in the room. The monitor is to the right of the screen, so if you use it to change channels or settings, it’s a challenge to see the TV. This is where a regular remote comes into play.

I found the remote for the TV, but there was again an issue – there are six remotes. To make it more confusing, every remote is the exact same. Every TV gets its own remote, which is good if you want to watch something on a separate screen, but it’s bad if you have no clue what remote controls what TV.

After filing through all six remotes, I found the right one for the TV I wanted to watch. This aspect of the lounge can be organized better. The remotes have numbers on the back of them and it’s pretty easy to figure out the correlation, but it’s a little bit of a guessing game.

With the TV on, I took a seat to put on a show to fill the silence. I didn’t need anything specific, so I put on “Skip and Shannon: Undisputed” (I wanted to watch the Penguins vs. Oilers game from the night before, but the TV didn’t have NHL Network).

As time went by, I realized I enjoyed the lounge more than sitting in other spots on campus. It fit everything I was looking for in a spot to kill time while reminding me I was still in school and I should do work.

The issues in the Henry Student Lounge are small ones, like organization of controls and possibly instructions on how to use them. It would be nice to have a vending machine there like in Banks and Anderson. There’s already a soda machine, so having snacks available would be a nice addition.

The time didn’t go by any faster than it would have in other spots where I sit, but if you have friends with you or if you’re watching a show live, time will fly. There are definitely enough things to do in the lounge to can kill time.

There’s a much more casual feeling in the lounge and it can, in a way, remove you from the school setting for a bit. If you have an extremely important assignment due or need to study, the library is a better fit. But, if you need to wind down for however long, the lounge is a good spot to do so.