John Carroll University has many areas where students can gather to hang out, relax or even do homework. Many of these areas are filled with comfortable seating, television sets and computers. This, of course, is very similar to many other universities but one of the things that differentiates JCU from other schools is that there is not a specific commuter student lounge.
On Feb. 8, junior Sharonica Smedley brought up this issue at the Student Union Senate meeting after some students had approached her with an interest in forming a new student lounge created mainly for commuter students.
At the meeting, the Senate did not have any debate on the issue as all felt it was a good idea. Junior Senator Brian Means liked the idea and volunteered to work with Smedley to bring the issue to the appropriate people.
Means said via e-mail, “I’m all for having a commuter lounge because during my past visits to other institutions, I saw that they had them and [they] were functioning well. It would be great to have an area dedicated for commuters to relax in between classes, work on assignments or just hang out.”
He continued to say that it was an issue he was not previously aware of since he is not a commuter student. By attending commuter student events, he was able to get a better idea of problems that commuters face that students living on campus would not.
The lounge is still in the beginning stages and Means and Smedley are working to set up meetings to start getting a better idea of where it will go.
According to Means, the most logical place to put the lounge would be in the D.J. Lombardo Student Center. He hopes that the lounge would hold computers and printers, comfortable furniture, and maybe even a television set.
Bridget Koenig, a freshman commuter student, was very excited and interested in the possibility of a commuter lounge.
She said, “I think that would be great, especially when I have a fairly long break between classes. It could be a place where I could get work done and just relax before my next class.”
Kyle O’Dell, JCU’s director of orientation and leadership programs, works with commuter students. He said he is planning to meet with officials from the facilities department to determine where space is available for a lounge.
O’Dell said a survey was conducted among freshmen and sophomore commuter students to determine where they spend their time between classes. He said many of the answers included the Administration Building, a friend’s dorm room or the Dolan Center for Science and Technology.