The Student Community Center (SCC) opened its doors to students, faculty and staff on Monday.
The SCC, located by the Chemistry Building and Shields Library, had a low-key opening day as students and faculty returned to classes for the Winter Quarter.
“The SCC has been in the works for 10 years and has been highly anticipated by the student interns at all the centers throughout this time. So far, the reaction has been very positive. It is an absolutely beautiful building in a great location,” said Griselda Castro, associate vice chancellor for student affairs, in an e-mail interview.
“Its location will be transformative for the campus in that it expands the central core of the campus and will feature a promenade or walkway from the corner of California and Shields Ave. to the front steps of Shields Library. It will be a great place for students to study, meet friends, attend events and get involved with diverse communities.”
The SCC includes campus programs that were previously located in separate areas on campus, such as the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Resource Center, the Undergraduate Research Center, the Cross-Cultural Center, and the Recruitment and Retention Center.
“[Moving to the SCC] has had a huge impact; it has given us the opportunity for the center to provide service to a much wider student body,” said Steven Baissa, Director of the Cross-Cultural Center. “Hopefully it will create a lot of traffic to the Cross-Cultural Center.”
The SCC includes an extended-hours study and reading room, a cafe operated by the ASUCD Coffee House (CoHo), a reflection room, traditional and gender-neutral restrooms, two outdoor balconies, a computer lab, study lounges and a multipurpose room.
The SCC will be opening the ASUCD CoHo South Café on Jan. 17.
“The South Café is a hybrid of a hang out place, an educational place, food components, and it is making the campus a progressive place,” said Adam Thongsavat, ASUCD president. “It is much smaller and quieter than the CoHo. It is a little more like a café.”
Construction for the building began in 2010. The building cost an estimated $22 million, which is being paid for largely from fees that students approved in referenda in 2003. This includes $8 million from the 2002 Campus Expansion Initiative (CEI). The remaining $14 million debt and operating expenses came from sources such as the CEI, the 1999 Facilities and Campus Enhancement Initiative, student service fees and campus investment funds, according to a press release.
Students pay roughly $531 a year in undergraduate tuition to the CEI, Thongsavat said.
Campus community and alumni are invited to join in the Dedication Ceremony and Celebration on May 18, Castro said.
“I think the new space gives [the resource centers] a much easier opportunity for collaboration. We can serve a much higher body of students; the exposure will clearly benefit everyone in the building,” Baissa said.
ALICIA KINDRED can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.