By Paul Choptuik, Coordinating News Editor
On May 30, SFSS president Giovanni HoSang proposed to the SFSS Board of Directors a new space model in the Student Union Building, giving permanent organizational suites to the groups currently housed in the Rotunda and reserving eight of the bookable rooms for clubs and DSUs. The building has a total of seven organizational suites and 22 bookable rooms.
Before this, HoSang briefly overviewed the space allocation issue’s history and the conflicts between the Rotunda groups and the SFSS, which ended in the 2017–18 Board of Directors’ choice not to allocate any permanent space in the SUB.
“In light of the controversy, I wanted to bring forward a whole plan that would suit the needs of clubs, DSU’s, student organizations, for them to be situated in the new student union building.”
HoSang pointed out that because no space has been allocated yet and no method of club selection had been developed, it was not too late to change the planned space model.
HoSang presented a solution to these issues by suggesting that board allocate eight of the 22 open bookable rooms on a semester by semester basis. This would leave 14 open bookable rooms for clubs and student unions on a day-to-day bookable basis.
HoSang also noted that since there were over 100 bookable spaces around campus, he believed losing eight in the SUB would not affect clubs that much.
Nick Chubb, applied science representative, questioned HoSang’s assessment, as many of the bookable spaces around campus are classrooms and are therefore in use throughout the day.
“Say you are at school, trying to study for exams or something or work on something. Chances are you can’t just book [classrooms] for that on the day of or something, right? [ . . . ] But having rooms in the SUB, those new rooms would be specifically more casually booked,” he said.
“They’re important for students to use because these other rooms are all booked basically all day.”
HoSang conceded that it was a good point, but argued that the availability of bookable spaces can be checked online in advance and suggested that people may not know this.
Ana Lozitskaia, a guest at the meeting, noted that these rooms shouldn’t be for individual students’ private use.
“We’re talking about bookable rooms for clubs and organizations and they’re not for private use [ . . . ] I do appreciate there is absolutely zero places that are quiet to study on this campus. But one of the things that are really important to me is that if we’re keeping the communities that provide reliable services and we shift them around every single semester, that’s freaking inaccessible.
“You don’t know where people are, they are shifting all the way, they have to allocate resources and time to changing their layout.”
She concluded by stating, “I would really appreciate it if all the things, all the people that provide very similar services, be in the same place so it would be really accessible to get to them at once.”
Sylvia Ceacero, Executive Director of the SFSS, also informed the board that meetings with the “aforementioned” groups were being scheduled, and that the information from those meetings would be brought back to the board.