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The Antelope

The Antelope

Changing campus: things will get worse first

The Antelope Newspaper

Chase Harrison

Amid handling flood damages, piling construction projects and enrollment being down for another consecutive year, UNK’s troubles are being added to by Greek housing and Otto Olsen being scheduled for demolition. With so many changes happening all at once, we are left to wonder if the University is simply looking to end all the frustration in one fell swoop by getting construction over with only to rip off the Band-Aid that will then be covering its entirety.

If plans weren’t already in the air with housing, they will be now. The demolition of University Residence North and South is resulting in approximately 200 students having to crowd into a new building; a building that is not equipped for this change into Greek Life. 

When University Residence North and South were finished being built 1992, they only had a life expectancy of 20 years. Now, seven years past their due, they are going to be demolished. It is surely time for this to happen – the problem lies in that construction is already overcrowding this campus. 

Only first-year students are required to live on campus, but many choose to stay throughout their college career. Moreover, these changes will be eliminating the necessary room on campus for students. This means more students not being able to live on campus. This is the opposite of what any university wants. When URN and URS were built it was to accommodate students in Greek Life and bring them closer to campus. Now a different effect will take place. Between construction and demolition, space is going to be limited at UNK in the near future. Still, the ultimate goal is what is important.

UNK taking care of all renovations at once is difficult for the time being but is the best way to go about it. With the kickback of current construction taking as long as it has, spreading out any upcoming work to be done would be much worse. If that were the case, any foreseeable future at this University would be littered with empty plots and half-built halls. Treating the problem, putting on the Band-Aid, then ripping it off – seems bold, but is the right thing to do.

Looking forward, it is hard to determine what UNK will look like in even five years or less. Some of us may not be around to see many of these changes come to fruition, and perhaps that is what makes it difficult to bear. We want UNK to be that never-changing home; a home that we can return to and show our future generations “this is where I took Biology” or “this was my first dorm room”. As UNK continues to grow and evolve, as we do, we realize this can’t always be the case, but we must except that. 

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