So There’s Going to be a Student Centre

The students have spoken in favour of a student centre in the Trent Central Student Association’s (TCSA) most recent election.

Voting students were given a choice, to say no all together or to say yes and select their choice of levy amounts: 85, 95 or 105 dollars. The final levy total was decided by an average of all these answers and the verdict is $95.01.

However, you won’t see that $95.01 charge on your account quite yet. The charge will not be applied to student accounts until the plans are entirely complete and everyone involved are all in the position to break ground and start building. Construction is anticipated to start in spring 2015.

Arthur spoke with experienced TCSA executive Tessa Nasca, who is serving this term as Vice President of Campaigns and Equity. Nasca was able to tell us that the hope is to open the doors of this building for the 2015 academic year, though it’s still not certain if this would be for the September start or January return of students.

The TCSA has spent the month of April in turn-over, enacting the results of the election and hiring needed staff. It is only this month that they are set up to begin the bulk of their work on summer projects. Nasca confirmed that the Student Centre will be a key project going forward.

Ideas about what the student centre might have include a pub or cafe, office or work space for levy groups, and student common space. The University wants to inculde a lecture hall comparable to Wenjack Theatre and hopefully frequently needed student services that would benefit from being more centralized on campus (as opposed to being “all the way out at Blackburn”).

Nasca mentioned that there will be a consultation process as the summer progresses and plans develop, where the TCSA will reach out to levy groups to understand their potential space needs in the student centre.

At the April 26 Board of Governors meeting, Trent President Steven Franklin reaffirmed that the University will support the project and work with students on next phases of additional fundraising, and architectural and site planning.

The most keenly discussed location for this new building would be between Bata Library and the Athletic Centre. Administration has reportedly been enthusiastic about this, hypothesizing that having the centre so close to Bata Library will encourage Bata’s nearly infamous socialites to move their Skype sessions, cell phone calls, and loud, distracting “group work” meetings next door.