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Wednesday, August 5, 2020

VU running out of space for clubs and events

A spike of spring events has left the Associated Students and program leaders scrambling for space in the Viking Union.

On April 5, Coordinator of Student Activities Casey Hayden sent a detailed email to all AS program leaders warning that the VU is near full capacity to provide additional space and staffing services for spring events.

Hayden then gave a deadline in the email to all program and club leaders urging them to submit all requests for large spring events.

“This is going to be the busiest [quarter] that I can remember in the last six tor seven years I’ve been here,” Hayden said. “One way to judge that is looking at the Multi-Purpose Room and the fact we’re hosting a lot of events on Sunday.”

Shalom Murphy, VU event services supervisor, said fall and winter events are leaking into spring.

There has been a higher number of complex and detailed events this quarter, Murphy said.

She said VU Event Services depends on student employees, and current employees are reaching their 19 hours-a-week limit. Murphy said they hired four additional stage-setup crew members, but they are out of work study hours for any more student employees.

The Newman Catholic Campus Ministry is one program affected by the spike of events.

Murphy said the VU Multi-Purpose Room has been so busy that the Newman Catholic Campus Ministry has been moved into a smaller room, VU 566, every week except for one time this quarter.

“I haven’t even gotten to pull numbers yet because we’re just trying to survive getting through the end.”

Shalom Murphy, VU event supervisor

Certain annual programs have been moved to Sundays instead of the usual Saturdays. One such event was the 7th-annual heritage dinner for the Vietnamese Student Association.

Club Steering Representative Lung Le said the club had to move their heritage dinner to Sunday because the Saturday they were aiming for was booked.

The Vietnamese Student Association talked to the organization that occupied the space on Saturday to see if there were alternatives, but there was nothing the two groups could work out.

Hosting the heritage dinner on Sunday caused the attendance to be lower than previous years. Le said there were going to be different regions of the Pacific Northwest Vietnamese Student Association organization coming to the event, but since it was on a Sunday, they could not make it.

“They [outside regions of VSA] couldn’t make the trip because it wouldn’t be worth it for them to come that night and leave,” Le said.

Hayden and Murphy said they will soon be able to evaluate if this has been the busiest quarter in history.

“I haven’t even gotten to pull numbers yet because we’re just trying to survive getting through the end,” Murphy said.

VU Event Services and AS Activities suggests club and program members begin planning future events and to reserve spaces for them now.

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