ETSU Student Government Association executives will present a piece of legislation March 17 to the Senate concerning suggested renovations to the D.P. Culp University Center.
“The main thing that we’re going for is more food options and more student-lounge space,” SGA President Doretha Benn said. “With the addition and renovation, it’s all going to be completely student space. It either goes to food, … student-lounge space, student-gaming space, places where students can meet, more technology. It’s all for student use.”
Benn said the proposed renovations to the D.P. Culp University Center will cost about $45 million, which will equate to a $125 student fee and an additional $25 student activity fee per semester.
“So, it would be $145 total per semester,” Benn said. “The $120 covers the construction, the design, the furnishings. And then, the $25 is to keep the Culp open longer, to have more staffing and things like that.”
Benn said the only currently enrolled students who will pay the new fee are freshmen.
“The only people who are here now who will pay the fee are the freshmen,” Benn said. “If you’re a sophomore and above, this fee will never affect you because you won’t ever see the changes.”
The piece of legislation will call for the creation of more space for student organizations through the integration of SORC A and B, Benn said. “The only offices that we’re kind of dislocating would be the SORC, and we’re just condensing them to make even more room for students. But none of the money is going to go to anything that has to do with administration
or offices.” In addition to the creation of more food options and student-lounge space, the D.P. Culp University Center renovation plans will include the creation of a space to be used as a media center.
“The media center is going to be student-run, and it’s going to be a place where we integrate the campus media as a whole,” Benn said. “We haven’t worked out the details, but it would be an integrated space for all of campus media. And then, [mass communication] would keep their classrooms where they are now in Warf.”
The SGA will be hosting open forums for students to voice their concerns about the renovation plans at 9 a.m. and 7 p.m. on March 18 in the East Tennessee Room in the D.P. Culp University Center, Benn said. “We have one in the morning and one in the evening. Anybody can come so we can hear concerns, get input.”