UNA Facilities Administration responds to student concerns

Memorial Amphitheater towers in the center of campus Feb. 10. Students voiced concerns about the need to have the structure cleaned since last year, and Facilities Administration and Planning responded by contracting a company to complete the project.

by Staff Writer Anna Brown

The Memorial Amphitheater and other buildings on campus were certainly memorable last fall, though for all the wrong reasons.

Since October, improvements to the Art Building and Memorial Amphitheater have been made and are scheduled to be finished this week, said assistant vice president for Facilities Administration and Planning Michael Gautney.

“We had a company come in and clean the exterior of the Art Building, the Music Building, Norton Auditorium and the amphitheater,” Gautney said. “This all has been ongoing for a couple of months now.”

He said most of the recent cleaning on the Art Building has been funded by donations.

“We had a donor request some work done at the Music Building,” he said. “We had already done some of the work there but the work we were doing was more on the sidewalks. They wanted to see something done on the building.”

SGA Vice President of Senate Nick Lang said students wanted the Memorial Amphitheater to be cleaned as well.

“The amphitheater is a central location on campus,” Lang said. “Multiple events are hosted there. That’s why I believe the students thought it was important for it to be cleaned.”

Junior Danielle Stokes said she thinks the amphitheater should be cleaned regularly.

“We host so many community events on campus,” Stokes said. “We need to keep our facilities clean for that.”

Campus beautification and navigation was one of the SGA’s goals for this year, Lang said.

He announced during a September Senate meeting he had contacted Assistant Vice President for Facilities Administration and Planning Michael Gautney about cleaning the amphitheater, according to a previous article in The Flor-Ala published Oct. 23.

SGA members began working with the department to get the structure cleaned during the 2013-14 school year when members of Freshman Forum voiced concerns about its appearance.

Lang said he set up a meeting with Gautney to discuss the cleaning of the amphitheater.

“After that, they contracted out people to clean the amphitheater,” Lang said. “We didn’t necessarily petition or anything — just as a Senate collectively urged them to clean it because we knew that’s what the students wanted.”

Facilities Administration and Planning has also cleaned and pressure-washed the sidewalks in front of Bibb Graves Hall, Collier Library and the Guillot University Center, Gautney said.

“We had actually started some of the work ourselves a couple of years ago. We’re trying to clean up some areas that were beginning to look pretty bad,” Gautney said.

Lang said he believes a clean campus is very important for incoming students.

“Their first impression is going be from what the campus looks like,” Lang said.

He also said he thinks a clean campus boosts student pride.

“I think it’s very important that we keep the buildings looking clean,” said junior Grace Ratliff. “It’s not just for the students but so we look good and well-kept to the community.”

Gautney said maintaining campus beauty is one of his department’s top priorities.

“We are doing some things to try to improve all of campus not just any one particular area,” he said.