Students lose shirts if ‘life center’ is built

By Eric Krol

To borrow a line from “Pump Up the Volume,” there’s something rank going on at NIU. You can smell it in the air or at least at last Sunday’s Student Association meeting.

Contrary to what the esteemed Dr. Eddie R. Williams and Dr. Barbara Henley are saying, we do not need a Student Life Center, especially considering the way they wish to finance it.

Here’s the real deal: there is no state money to build this unnecessary building.

So how will Williams and Henley, the undisputed finance tag team champions of NIU, get the money for this monstrosity?

The answer is an increase in student fees. Not a small increase, mind you, but an increase of up to $45 per year for 25 years. This doesn’t even take into account fee increases for other things as well.

In other words, bend over students while NIU screws you once again.

In plain terms, NIU will float a loan in the form of bonds to get money for the building, which will cost between $6 million and $7 million. The interest on the loan will be about $7 million, for a grand total of $14 million for the whole shot. Financing a project sure costs a lot of money nowadays, even if the Feds just cut interest rates.

Keep in mind that Williams is set to go to the Board of Regents and get architectural design plans rubber-stamped at the December meeting.

Yet, while fielding questions with the dexterity of Ryne Sandberg, Williams told wary senators to keep in mind that nothing was set in stone because the BOR hadn’t approved anything yet.

Well, if senators should give Williams the benefit of the doubt, then why is he maneuvering so quickly to get off the ground if details are still sketchy?

Williams also said design plans would be completed in an unusually quick six months and construction would take another year.

What’s the rush, Eddie? Shouldn’t we take our time and get the best plans and construction possible?

This is what’s happening, fellow students—he’s trying to rush this building through because if the project were really to be carefully examined, its many holes would be exposed, and it would fall apart quicker than the White Sox in September.

Besides all that, the primary argument being spewed out is that the building will consolidate student organizations and services, moving them out of the Student Center and Swen Parson to the center.

At the new building, no office space is provided for most of these student organizations, just a bunch of desks in one area. Does this help students? Where’s the privacy?

If a new building is built, other to-be-named offices will move into the Student Center space. But who will move into the space those offices vacate?

I’d be willing to bet that the administration will just plop right in there, making the whole Student Life Center concept a cover for adding new space for the administration.

Another argument being used is “Hey, ISU is already building their Stupid Life Building.” When will the administration drop this immature competition-mindset with ISU? It’s getting old.