UA Committee Chair Talks About Student Space Planning Role

This is the seventh of a series of weekly interviews with members of different Undergraduate Association committees. These interviews will be conducted by The Tech’s news editors and members of the editorial board. A UA representative will be present during these interviews as well. Questions for the UA committee members should be sent to the same week they are featured. Responses to these questions will be printed alongside the following week’s interview.

This week’s featured committee is the newly–formed Committee on Student Space Planning. The Tech talked to Committee Chair David Lee G.

The Tech: Describe the committee and the major issues your committee is dealing with.

David Lee: Our committee is new. The big project this year is putting together an official report for administrators or anyone involved in student space planning to articulate student needs. We’re hoping to release the report by the end of the spring. To do the report, we’re planning a series of discussions with students. The first one was last Thursday [Feb. 15] with performing arts groups. This Thursday, Feb. 22, we’re going to talk about the state of Walker Memorial. There is planning taking place in the administration about what’s going to happen to Walker in the next five years. We want to make sure students have a say.

TT: How often will you be having these meetings?

DL: We’re hoping to have a meeting every week until spring break. They will be in the UA office on the fourth floor of the Student Center.

TT: Can you describe what was talked about at the last meeting?

DL: The theatre and dance groups were at the last meeting. They’re pretty cooperative with each other, and there was a lot of agreement on what the issues are. We talked about performance spaces and rehearsal spaces in Kresge, Little Kresge, and La Sala. In terms of scheduling spaces, it’s even more difficult now, because all the groups are growing.

TT: Besides the meetings, what other work will the committee be doing for the report?

DL: We’re also going to research other schools, and put that in context to where MIT stands. Compared to universities of comparable size, people at other schools can name much better space. We don’t have enough and what we have is not well-suited.

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