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Friday, April 19, 2024
The Observer

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HCC students sign petition denouncing changes to Pfeil Center

More than 100 students signed a petition protesting the consolidation of cardio and weight equipment

In recent weeks at Holy Cross College, students have expressed disappointment at recent changes made to the layout of the Pfeil Center gym. The controversy began Feb. 8 when the administration moved the cardio equipment from the first floor to the second floor, which previously held only the weight room equipment.

The move elicited criticism from members of the student body who said that the new setup was too cramped.

“The change created a space that is crammed and uncomfortable to work out in, with new safety risks due to the close proximity of equipment,” senior Charles Haupstueck said in an email.

“I was unhappy with the shift since many cardio machines have been moved upstairs,” senior Luke Ruff added. “It is very cramped, which has been the consensus by most of the student body that uses the gym.”

Multiple students said the changes were made without any input from or prior communication with students.

With widespread discontent, Haupstueck and Ruff decided to start a petition to get the changes reversed.

“As students who pay tuition, we are entitled to certain amenities. We feel that in reconfiguring the Pfeil Center, the school is substantially altering one of our key amenities without consulting the student body as a whole,” the petition reads. “As such, we are making our voice heard and asking that the school return the cardio room to its original condition.”

As of Wednesday, 149 students had signed the petition.

In response to the petition, student government association president Bradley Szotko, vice president Joseph Stokes and chief of staff Ashley McDonald met with Robert Pastoor, special assistant to the office of the president for planning and development, on Friday to discuss the changes to the gym.

Stokes described the meeting as “very productive” and said the administration said “they would return the cardio room as it was originally if that was the only acceptable option.”

“We were very well pleased with how it went,” he added.

Pastoor “was extremely cooperative and helpful during the meeting, and apologized about the whole situation,” Stokes said.

Szotko and Stokes said they would meet again with Pastoor in the coming week to do a “walk-through” of the gym and identify ways to improve the current layout.

Pastoor said he would continue to meet with students and “explore a number of options that are available to us.”