The commuter lounge, officially named the Hound Lounge, opened on the second floor of the Schwitzer Student Center on Monday, Oct. 27. The lounge is around the corner from the Center for Advising and Student Achievement.
The lounge has been planned since last year. After the Vision 2030 survey showed that commuters wanted their own spot on campus, Director of Student Support and Parent Programs and Title IX Coordinator Erin Stoner researched other college campuses and found they had lounges set up for their commuters. So she decided to bring this idea to the University of Indianapolis.
Along with developing the lounge, Stoner hired commuter assistants, who are in charge of assisting commuters, informing them about events, and helping students get involved by creating their own events for students.
On Oct. 22, the lounge was open for commuters to come and visit for a couple hours. The first 50 to arrive received a free ticket to the Plain White T’s concert in Nicoson Hall. Visitors also got to see the lounge for the first time.
The lounge has a plasma television, a couch, a printing station, two armchairs with tables attached to them, two desks and two computers.
One commuter assistant, sophomore computer science and electrical engineering major Han Shih, said she was pleased to see the Hound Lounge opened to the community.
“I think for me, personally, it feels great to see everything come together,” she said. “Like last time we just talked about things, and we weren’t sure how it would turn out to be. And now we actually have a more concrete idea.”
To celebrate, Shih and the other commuter assistants hosted an open house on Monday, Oct. 27, 3 p.m.-6 p.m. Those who attended could decorate cookies; take photos in the photo booth; win door prizes or a gift card for gas, The Cheesecake Factory, Taco Bell, McDonalds, AMC Movie Theater or the University of Indianapolis bookstore.
Shih said the Hound Lounge is intended for students to use to socialize, seek help from the assistants, relax or study. However, she said students need to be mindful that other people may want to use the resources, too, and to be careful with the property in the lounge.
Shih said the commuter assistants are in the lounge from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. and their individual office hours will be posted in the lounge. They will have their own tab on the My UIndy website to inform students about any updates or events.
Freshman biology and nursing major Sean Miller reacted positively to the lounge.
“It’s very neat, [and] well organized,” he said. “It’s got a nice view, too, and it’s very well lit.”
The lounge has the same hours as the Schwitzer Student Center.