Rec center cuts back hours

Due to limited funding, the hours for the campus recreation center at have changed.

The center hours will open at 10 a.m. and close 8 p.m. on weekdays and 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. on Saturdays. 

The hours before were 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. on weekdays and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturdays.

The rec center was forced to reduce the amount of staff members, work hours and operation hours because it relies on funding from activities and services fees. The center is just one entity hurt by the lack of A&S funding this semester.

Athletes and students use the facility to work out. Now, due to the new schedule, students will have to abide by the new hours. Recreation Center Associate Gei-Nam Lim said finances were the reason for the switch.

“We only have a limited amount of money,” Lim said. “We can’t spend more than what we have, so our staff has been cut.”   

Lim said before the cuts, the recreation center had four to five trainers walking the floor. They also had four to five staff members running the front area as well as around the center. However, now only two to three trainers and workers can be found.

“If they don’t give us enough money, we can’t hire anyone,” Lim said. “I almost have one person per shift and we have to ask them to work more effectively. We’ll get more stress, but it’s what we do.”

Some students seem to be fine with the change of the recreation center’s hours.

“It seems kind of short for the weekends but we should be able to find time out of the week anyway,” said Bradley Rogers, 20, third-year pharmacy student from Bloomfield, Mich. “Besides, we should be studying during some of that time.”

Lim said the new schedule is only a reduction of two hours and they were for the students’ and center’s advantage.

“The busy hours are mostly 4 p.m. to 7 p.m., so the students are still happy,” Lim said.

But as far as the staff members being satisfied with less work hours, some feel they don’t work enough.

“It’s affecting us,” said Anthony Washington, 24, a third-year business student from Lakeland. “Customer service is only allowed to do six hours a week because of the budget cut.”

The recreation center’s employees normally worked 12 hours or more but that has been severely reduced.

“That ain’t nothing but gas money,” said Lamaras James, a 20-year-old junior psychology student from Orlando.

Lim said one of his main concerns is the safety of the center and the people using the equipment when only two trainers are present. For him, proper time management means everything.

 “We may be trimmed further,” Lim said. “And when that happens, how can we operate the building?”