Valdosta Daily Times

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October 29, 2009

‘The Campus Living Room’

A sneak peek at Valdosta State’s new Student Union

VALDOSTA — By January, Valdosta State University students will have a new place to mix and mingle.

VSU’s $37 million Student Union will open its doors on Jan. 7, with an official ribbon cutting scheduled for mid-January.

On Thursday, members of the media got a tour of the 113,000 square-foot facility, that now stands where the former 35,000 square-foot union and gymnasium once stood.

Jonathan Stroble, an admissions counselor at VSU, helped give the tour.

While a student at VSU, Stroble served as the president of the Student Government Association and served on the design committee that helped bring the new student union to life.

The front doors facing the intersection of Baytree Road and Oak Street open into a three-story atrium. High ceilings, glass railings and a wide staircase are viewed upon entrance.

Lounge areas on each level of the staircase provide students a place to hang out to “see and be seen,” Stroble said.

“This building will serve as the campus living room,” he said. “It will be the students’ building 100 percent.”

To the left of the atrium is a 322-seat auditorium. The room has Dolby surround sound a 10-by-17-foot movie screen and a small stage.

Currently, the university has a theater, which seats fewer than 100 students, at the University Center.

A convenience area outside the theater will serve as a snack kiosk during events at the theater, Stroble said.

To the right of the atrium is the new location of the VSU Bookstore. The two-story store houses the tech shop and text books on the first floor and university merchandise on the second.

The Union Station game room is housed on the first floor. Video games, pool tables, ping pong and foosball will be available in the pub-style facility.

A food court is also located on the second floor. Nathan’s Famous Hot-dogs and Starbucks Coffee will open on campus and The Loop Pizza Grill will return to the student union.

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