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OPINION: Students should take advantage of new space reallocation system

Over the years, the Belmont Vision has done its fair share of reports on lack of campus space– from Greek organizations to residence life, everyone seems to be looking for more space on our sometimes cramped campus.

Some of the issues were resolved with the opening of the new R. Milton and Denice Johnson Center: The previously small caf gave way to a new and shiny beast, the media studies program expanded from the second floor of the Gabhart Center to our new home on the DAC’s fourth floor and the school of music business settled in nicely on the third.

However, with two new buildings and the shift of campus away from what used to be its heart, Belmont suddenly has a new problem on its hands: an abundance of new and empty space.

When Belmont upper administration sent an email to the student body a little over a week ago announcing a new system for space reallocation, it opened the door for a thousand possibilities, a vast majority of them in the hands of the students.

The new system relies on students to submit suggestions for empty space usage until Nov. 20. Suggestions will be posted on MyBelmont to receive feedback from other members of the Belmont community, and in February, administrative leadership will evaluate submissions for implementation.

Essentially, after a year of quiet speculation on behalf of students and staff alike, we have been given a direct and systematic way of airing our ideas about on-campus space to those people who can take our suggestions into consideration and– just maybe– choose to act on them.

It would be easy to lose track of the system, to ignore the emails and the portal hidden inside one of the many digital drawers inherent to the new MyBelmont page. It would be easy to say that our suggestions won’t matter much in the end, or– for the older students– that we won’t get to see the benefits that may come.

However, space reallocation is a topic that affects every student who spends any significant time on campus, and we– as the current students– shouldn’t let the opportunity to put our opinions out there pass us by.

If we want more practice rooms, we should say as much. If we want specifically designated meeting places for Belmont’s almost 150 organizations, we should make that clear. If we just want space to hang out, to study or relax between classes, we should let the administration know.

If we want to make campus better for ourselves and for future students, we have to be willing to put our concerns and ideas out there.

While not every suggestion can or will be acted upon, if enough students show interest in an idea, who knows what can be possible when we take initiative and accept the partnership that Belmont’s leadership has offered.

Maybe we’ll finally even get a pool.

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