Student Lounge Improvements Add to West Liberty Experience

This semester, West Liberty University students had more choices of attractive spaces for studying and socializing, thanks to recent improvements made in student lounges.

Beta, Hughes, Curtis and Bonar main lounges were renovated with a fresh new look last year with new paint, carpet, ceilings, lighting, TVs and furniture.

Krise Hall, too, was completely renovated over last summer with new paint, flooring, ceilings, lighting, TVs, furniture, separate vending area, new kitchen update and two new study rooms. The Krise renovation design was inspired by students who submitted their ideas in a campus sponsored Krise Hall design contest last spring. Accounting major Hayden Blazer and exercise physiology major Miranda Snell created the winning design and received both a scholarship reward and cash prizes for their work.

Other students who submitted designs include: Catherine Wells and Brandon Gast (second place submission), Aaron Allman, Tyler Conrad, Courtney Moore, Cory Voll and Kaitlin Ward.

Blazer and Snell report that comments have been favorable for the new and improved Krise Lounge.

“The new lobby is a big hit!” said Blazer, who is from Glen Dale. “There are a lot more people hanging out in the lobby now.”

There is even an aquarium that adds to the updated, relaxed look of the lounge.

Snell added, “The final Krise design is quite a bit different than the one Hayden and I created, but it still has the classy feel we were going for. It clearly is a success because there are tons of people from all different social groups who frequent the lobby now compared to last year. I am happy with the results overall.”

Snell, who is from Pittsburgh, is one of 10 resident assistants in Krise, so she hears all the comments, good and bad.

“It’s been a big plus for students living on campus,” she said. About 320 students reside in Krise. The new lounge offers many options for study groups and relaxing.

“WLU’s maintenance staff completed most of the renovations and did an amazing job. We are lucky to have that kind of talent in house. Vendors were procured for flooring, furniture and some of the paint,” added Hooper.

Area coordinator Chris McPherson works in the Office of Housing and Student Life. He manages Krise Hall and supervises staff in Beta Hall, as well. He feels that the lounge updates are one of the best improvements made to campus recently.

“The lounge updates have been a welcomed improvement for residential students and have played a major role in the increased use of lobbies throughout campus, especially in Krise Hall,” he said.

WLU offers a variety of housing to its students including seven student residence halls, the Common Apartments, University Place Apartments and student residence houses for specific majors or groups. Marcella Snyder, who has been employed at WLU since 2004, deals with dorm life daily as executive director of Office of Housing and Student Life.

“We always look for opportunities to improve services and facilities for our students, so it’s rewarding when I see such a positive response and students who genuinely appreciate the improvements. Each time I go into the residence halls, there are students in the lounges studying, playing games, watching television or just hanging out. Seeing them enjoy the space is wonderful!” she said.

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