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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


Offices to move into Nugent, Bear Down Gym

Robert Alcaraz
Robert Alcaraz/Arizona Summer Wildcat Construction workers assemble parts of shelves as they prepare Bear Down Gym for renovations.

Several UA offices will be moved into Bear Down Gymnasium by the end of the summer due to upcoming renovations scheduled for Old Main.

The university’s oldest building will be undergoing restoration work due to wear and tear on its support beams, column and porches. During the restoration, each employee housed in Old Main will be moved either to the gym or the Nugent building.

Keith Humphrey, dean of students and assistant vice president of Student Affairs said that the move to the gym is temporary until the university can find a permanent home for the offices. He added that the Old Main construction is estimated to take about 21 months and that moving to the gym was the most practical solution as office space around campus is limited.

“The university does not have a lot of excess office space,” Humphrey said. “The important thing is to get our iconic building restructured.”

In order to make room for the several offices moving out of Old Main, Student Affairs will move to the Nugent building. The department will be permanently stationed in Nugent because of the privacy it offers students and employees.

“The nature of our work lends itself better to Nugent,” Humphrey added.

The Center for Exploratory Students, the Office of Admissions and the Think Tank will be among those moving in mid-July to their new home in the gym. Victor Mercado, assistant director of the Think Tank, said they are excited about the opportunity.

“Expansion gives us the opportunity to serve more students better,” Mercado said. “Tutoring is going really well. The student experience will be enhanced (with the move to the gym).”

Carpet will be put down in the gym to help reduce the noise, according to Mercado, and cubicles will be installed to create separate offices and spaces for students and faculty.

Mercado said that this year, the Think Tank had 100,000 visits, with the Nugent building being the most popular site. Mercado said he is excited that the move to the gym will allow them to help more students, as the additional space will allow more assistance at a given time.

Humphrey also added that now that the Office of Admissions, the Think Tank and the Center for Exploratory Students will be together in one building, it will help the university recruit more students.

“I can really see only positive outcomes for this move,” he said.

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