The Unit Relocation and Space Allocation Committee (URSAC) has voted to relocate the Entertainment Council (EC) to the former AS Papers space located in Lower Freeborn and to have Creative Media expand its programming unit into EC’s current space on the third floor of the Memorial Union (MU).
The committee, which is responsible for determining space allocations and voting on space allocation issues as they arise for ASUCD units, voted on these relocations on Friday, following proposals received from unit directors in the fall requesting to expand their operations to the former AS Papers room in Lower Freeborn.
According to Melanie Maemura, chair of URSAC and ASUCD Controller, the committee held various discussions that included unit directors to arrive at their final vote.
“It was critical to make these movements in the beginning of the school year to accommodate the growth of [Creative Media] and the operations of Entertainment Council,” Maemura said in an email interview. “Creative Media and especially Entertainment Council had been operating in spaces that limited their operations.”
Currently, the AS Papers space is being utilized by Aggie Reuse for storage. The new unit aims to distribute items collected from landfills to promote environmental awareness through reuse of these items.
Kristie Wu, Aggie Reuse director and fourth-year communication major, said they have not yet begun looking into new spaces for storage.
“It shouldn’t impact us too much if we remain in Lower Freeborn. If we end up having to move our storage space somewhere far from our store location, a lot will have to be considered regarding transportation since we access our storage space frequently,” Wu said in an email interview.
One of the main reasons for the Creative Media expansion to the current EC space (the unit is currently based on the third floor of the MU as well) is the increase in student positions. More space was required for its programmers and growing volunteer base, according to Maemura.
Henry Chatfield, director of Entertainment Council and overseer of the unit’s operations and about 15 staff members and interns, said that he was initially hesitant about the possibility of a move.
“I have spent a lot of time discussing it with our assistant director and we agree that it will be a positive change … It will relocate us in a space that is much closer to the other media and entertainment units — KDVS, AGTV,” he said in an email interview.
Because the new space is already connected to the unit’s equipment room, Chatfield said the move will not affect its functioning.
“We will be able to very effectively utilize the space with volunteer training. The interest in our unit has also been rapidly expanding and sometimes we can have over 30 volunteers at a meeting, so having a larger office space will be an obvious improvement in that respect as well,” he said.
Unit directors agree that the move will promote further collaboration in the future.
Anna Oh, executive producer of AggieTV and third-year film studies major, said a negative aspect of working in Lower Freeborn is that some days she does not get to see the light of day, but she agrees that Entertainment Council’s move to the basement will foster more opportunities for the units to work together.
“I definitely see greater future opportunities with our new neighbor on the Lower Freeborn Hall! It’s great that all media units will now be on the same floor,” she said in an email interview.
The timeline for the relocations is currently being determined, according to Maemura.
During the meeting, the campus radio station KDVS and AggieTV presented proposals for recording and filming studios, respectively. URSAC voted to revisit the proposals after the completion of the seismic retrofit of Freeborn Hall. The proposals were added to long-range plans that are being compiled by the Internal Affairs Commission.
MUNA SADEK can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.