Rec center can’t afford to open on weekends

Outside FAMU’s rec center. Photo by Destiny Jackson.

The Hansel E. Tookes Student Recreation Center is one of the most visited locations at Florida A&M University.
In its pursuit of lifelong wellness and competitive fun, FAMU provides a diverse array of recreational programs and services to FAMU students, according to a top-ranking administrator at FAMU.

However, operating hours of the rec center do not include the weekends due to shortages, according to personnel at the center.

This is in direct contrast to Florida State University, which has significant funding for the Bobby Leach Center, allowing for more flexibility and additional student staff.

“The recreation center’s hours are budgeted through activity and service fees,” Willam E. Hudson, Jr., vice president of the Office of Student Affairs, said. “The cost of running the facility is provided to the Student Senate and they distribute funds to all clubs and organizations on campus including the recreation center. Based on that budget, hours of operation, facility cleaning, student salaries, staff salaries, yard maintenance, utilities etc. are determined. If there are not enough resources available to cover daily openings, then difficult decisions have to be made.”

Hudson emphasized that he wants the student body to make the rec center more of a priority when allocating resources.

“The rec center is beneficial in the sense of personal gain,” said graduating senior Joshua Carter. “It helps me find peace while being able to maintain my health goals. If the rec were to open on weekends, I wouldn’t find it more convenient than I do on the regular, although it’d definitely give me something to do.”

Carter described his experience as astounding while being a member of the rec center. He also said he enjoys all the resources the rec center offers.

According to Hudson, staff at the rec center have petitioned for additional funding in order to be to hire additional staff and be open on the weekends.

The rec center offers a variety of different activities, such as wrestling, boxing, fishing, women’s and men’s volleyball clubs and more. The central theme of the rec center’s success is built on support.

More funding would have to be allocated to the rec center to operate on the weekends, permitting the university to pay workers for the time they put in. However, budgeting issues are intended to alter upon the rec center being approved for supplemental funding.