The Campus Center problems have frustrated students for a while, but particularly this semester. Two different Otterbein presidents have held meetings discussing the renovations for the Campus Center, but as of now, no changes have been made. President Kathy Krendl’s administration hired an architect who made plans for the renovation; however, the university did not have enough money to follow through with these plans. When President John Comerford entered office in 2018, he inherited these problems. Although he has proposed several plans to the Board of Trustees, nothing definitive has been decided yet.
Everyone is aware that we need renovations, but nothing is happening. The Campus Center was built in the late 1960s, and it is no longer able to serve the campus’s needs. According to a December 2018 post on the Otterbein website about the Campus Center renovation, “Many of the student centers built in the 60s and 70s have become functionally obsolete.” The Campus Center’s current problems include the elevator, the bathrooms, the lounge area, and, of course, the dining facilities.
When Parkhurst replaced Bon Appetit as Otterbein’s dining service, they inherited the poor facilities of the Cardinal’s Nest in the Campus Center. They have done their best to provide quality food with inadequate equipment. However, students have blamed Parkhurst for these facility issues, including the water main break on November 18. This water break resulted in Parkhurst’s inability to serve lunch due to health and safety codes. Although Parkhurst had no choice but to refrain from serving lunch, students were angry at the dining service. To prevent these incidents in the future, it is essential that the Campus Center renovations are completed.
Otterbein frequently discusses changes, but rarely makes them. Otterbein markets itself as an innovative school that listens to the needs of its students; however, the many meetings and discussions have yet to yield any results. Students will continue to be frustrated until the university solves the issues and prioritizes the needs that the Campus Center renovations would address.