Letter to the Editor: ASEWU responds to PUB remodel editorial

The Easterner

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23 February 2015

I am writing, as a member of ASEWU, in response to the editorial in the Feb. 18 edition of The Easterner regarding the proposed PUB remodel. We are fully aware of the student population’s aversion to another fee being added to the already overbearing cost of higher education; please remember we are all students too. Remodeling the Pence Union Building is much more than this fee. Eastern Washington University is a school absolutely worthy of the same amount of pride to which other Washington schools are afforded by their populations. Yes, it is true that not all students contributing financially to the proposed remodel will reap all of the benefits of the new building, and it is also true that a remodel of any caliber would be inconvenient, but this is bigger than just us, and bigger than just right now.

Up to this point we have done our very best to inform the student body of the goals and rationales behind the proposal. We have heard frustrated students complain about the bombardment of information they have received and their annoyance at our constant presence at events and around campus to get you as much information as possible. We knew the students needed to be correctly informed of the plan behind the remodel to make a conscientious choice regarding the future of this building.

A remodeled student union building would make an attractive addition to our university, but the students should really consider why, and it is not to be pretty. An enhanced student union will be for the students in the purest sense. There will be more rooms for clubs and organizations to meet, rather than hunting down a free space in Patterson or the Fireside Lounge; there will be easy access to current student services like the PRIDE Center and ASEWU. We should not have to search a labyrinth for services students utilize and depend upon. In addition to existing services offered, we have had an overwhelming amount of requests from multiple groups asking for the establishment of a Multicultural Center, for which Eastern is desperately lacking.

The PUB is not the only building on campus in need of some serious love and attention but it is however, one of the very few buildings students get a real voice in determining its fate. We cannot control when the residence halls are remodeled, that would come from entirely separate funding and is determined by Residential Life not the student body. As the Director of Elections this year I strongly encourage all students to grab a voters pamphlet, search our website and strongly consider the whole picture of what this remodel would mean for our university. Regardless of how you vote, make your decision a conscious choice not just an opinionated click of a button. As previously stated, this is bigger than us and bigger than just right now.

Kelsey Lavelle

ASEWU, Director of Elections

 

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