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Clubs may lose space

By Ami Dave     12/2/10 6:00pm

Due to rules regarding the use of available office spaces in the Student Center, student organizations RTV5 and the Hispanic Association for Cultural Enrichment at Rice are at risk of losing their spaces in the spring because they do not fulfill the required minimum 10 hours of office hours each week.Every club with space in the Student Center is required to hold at least 10 office hours per week, with at least one officer present during that time. Director of the Student Center Boyd Beckwith said that at the last Student Center Advisory Council meeting Nov. 8, it was discovered that RTV5 and HACER are having trouble getting their requirement of 10 hours per week. Beckwith said that these two organizations have been notified that they need to increase their office hours or they will risk losing their space in the spring. They will be invited to the next council meeting if they wish to explain why they cannot meet the 10-hour requirement.

Student clubs and organizations can apply for office space in the Student Center as long as they meet certain requirements, including keeping a clean and presentable space, honoring the building codes of the center and keeping a list of office hours.

Associate Director of the Student Center Pam Shefman said that beginning this year, the Student Center Advisory Council has implemented a new system of logging office hours for each club with space in the Student Center. In the past, club officers have been in charge of tracking hours on their own. This semester, however, officers have to sign in and out at the beginning and end of every office period at the information desk in the Student Center.

"Since there were more applications [this year] for spaces than the actual number of spaces available, the council wanted to make sure each organization was putting the space to good use," Shefman said. "This is a better tracking system for the hours of use because it ensures that officers are indeed holding enough office hours a week and doesn't raise any concerns about legitimacy."

RTV5 Station Manager Trevor Rice said that RTV5 has two small spaces in the Student Center: one containing broadcast equipment and the connection to the Mudd Building and one that houses filming and editing equipment. Rice said that RTV5 is willing to attempt to raise their office hours to keep their space in the center.

"Currently we are averaging only eight hours per week, and if we don't bring that number up, we could lose our office to another club," Rice said. "The space is very valuable to us and we are going to do everything we can to keep it.

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