Under the sultry sun, students gathered on the Matador Bookstore lawn to celebrate the halfway building point of the new Student Recreation Center opening Spring 2012.
The University Student Union (USU) hosted a celebration to commemorate the building of the new recreation center during the Student Recreation Center Halftime Report by handing out free food and raising health awareness on campus, with DJ Rich spinning sensational beats.
Different aspects of the recreation center were represented with weights, racquetball, rock climbing, basketball and a kiddy pool.
Kalia Lavin, a 21-year-old graduate assistant for the recreation center, said this event was a great way to start getting students aware.
“We wanted to educate the student population about the student rec center,” Lavin said. “This mini reception is a great way to educate students, even if it’s with cheesy activities.
“We are lucky to have been blessed with an awesome marketing department,” Lavin continued. “The USU has been supportive and extremely helpful promoting the rec center. They have been so enthusiastic with their support. The rock climbing wall is very eye-catching.”
Sidney Fernandez, one of the first people to use the rock climbing station, said she was shocked to see a rock climbing station while walking over to the bookstore.
“I was just walking down to grab some food and decided to do some rock climbing instead,” said Fernandez, a 23-year-old mechanical engineering major. “If the rec center was open now, I would so be there. I wish it was like the one at Moorpark College by having a spinning, rotating, and vertical treadmill-like surface to climb. Still, I wish I was going to be around when (the recreation center) finally opens.”
During the event, 10 males and females participated in a rock climbing competition.
Junior Samantha Gross, special education and Spanish major, and junior Josh Berry, communications major, won the competition by having the best times to reach the top. They each received a Student Recreation Center swag bag, two tickets for the Aquarium of the Pacific in Long Beach, and a $50 gift card from REI.
Students were given a card that needed to be signed off by all the various stations before receiving their free trail mix, one of the many things used to promote healthy awareness.
Raffle tickets were also given to students after they completed stations so they could enter a drawing for a bicycle, day passes to the recreation center, membership for the recreation center, and a personal workout station.
“It’s a future glimpse of what we are going to have,” said Joanna Chin, 17, liberal studies major. “It’s great to see what the rec center is going to be like and I can hardly wait.”
At the Klotz Student Health Center booth, students would spin a wheel and learn about various health facts.
“The outreach with students is great,” said Janis Martin, wellness coach and substance use specialist for the Klotz Student Health Center. “We are here to inform people and help those who know people or personally have substance abuse problems.”
Jasmin Palomera, 21, child development major, is just one of many excited about the new rec center, especially since it will be free.
“I want to stay on campus to work out instead of driving around and save money on gas,” Palomera said. “It will be so worth having the rec center on campus considering all the money we spend. It will definitely make our campus healthier.”
Sudep Davis Raavi, 23, is one of many students who learned about the event by staying connected with the USU and A.S. on social networking websites. He said he wishes more had been done to promote the event.
“I found out about the event after receiving a text (from the USU) and on Facebook (from A.S.),” said Raavi, a mechanical engineering major. “It’s better if more people know about these events. Maybe more promotion is needed with flyers and posters. There were some signs, but I saw very few flyers.”
One sign that was heavily advertised was voting for the new Student Recreation Center slogan.
Students had the opportunity to vote for the recreation center’s slogan by placing a black or white marble in one of three slogan boxes: “Where Matadors Play,” “Matadors…Make Your Move” and “Make Your Move.”
“This was informative,” said Troy Scott, 35, theatre major. “There is a lot of energy and excitement by offering students free stuff. My only complaint was I wish there was a small wall to actually play racquetball, but it was still fun. The swimming pool (station) was cheesy, but it was also very fun.”
Student sports clubs were also represented, with the hockey and the Brazilian Jiu Jitsu clubs showing their support.