On Jan. 29 students hand-delivered a petition to President Hanbury requesting that the temperature of the Don Taft University Center be lowered.
“It’s the warmest building on campus,” said Lauren Sampson, sophomore biology major. “It’s like walking through the Sahara Desert.”
As the UC is a hub for student activity, an average temperature has often been an expectation. Al Benson, who has worked as a history professor at NSU for thirty years, said that the goal of reaching perfect living temperatures has never been met in the UC.
“Whoever controls the AC in that building has always fallen short,” said Benson. “I’ve watched generations of students sweat to death as they try to enjoy some quality time together and study.”
The idea of lowering the temperature in the building isn’t new, but also isn’t often addressed by the administration. In a 2012 memorandum sent via email to the university population, the university stated that the building meets temperature requirements and that the UC is supposed to “mirror Florida’s warm climate.”
“That’s ridiculous,” said Kyle Ramirez, senior theater major. “I want to walk out of the UC and have my glasses fog because of the temperature difference. I want to have to pack a coat if I even plan on walking though the building.”
Ramirez said that he envisions a UC where students who dress appropriately for Florida weather start to hate their life when they walk into the building. He said that a colder temperature would also promote sensible fashion, such as sweatpants, that he feels students do not get to indulge in because of the South Florida climate.
NSU administration has yet to respond to the petition, but students are not giving up.
“Hanbury wasn’t there when we went to deliver them, so we left the petition outside his door, but we know that he’s received them because the school sent an email,” said Mallory Nespa, freshman communication major.
A spokesperson for Hanbury said that the president realizes the concerns of the student body and will speak with facilities about correcting the issue. Until then, the university will not release any more statements on the matter.
Sampson said that she’s hopeful change will come from the petition.
“This is something the student body has been fighting to get for years,” she said. “I really think that this is the year the UC becomes colder for you and for me.”