After serving William Woods for many years as a residence hall, Brockman Hall began the 2021 fall semester with a new purpose: the basement and first floors of the building have been converted into an all-purpose student center, housing the Offices of Career Services and Student Transition, Student Involvement, and Diversity and Inclusion, plus meeting, study and relaxation areas. Officially referred to now as Brockman Student Center, the much-needed new space occupies the ground and basement floors of the building, with Graduate Assistant housing continuing to occupy the top two floors.
Open to students from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. on Monday through Fridays with plans to expand hours to include evenings and weekends soon, the new center provides students with a little bit of everything.
Inside of Brockman there are now multiple spaces for students to hangout, do homework, or have club meetings. This includes amenities like a specialized meeting/interview room, designed for students to have a place to utilize for meetings or interviews, either in person or by Zoom. By now having this space that is equipped with a large screen and camera, students have an alternative to trying to have Zoom meetings or interviews in their residence hall rooms where there could be disturbances.
The new Brockman Student Center also has a “Zen” room where students can come in to study, chill, meditate, and relax, modeled in the style of a single-unit residence hall room complete with desk and even a bed. This space is equipped with resources that students can utilize to practice self-care. The space downstairs also has a large game and meeting room with a full-service kitchen that is big enough to host LEAD events in, providing a range of possibilities.
“I know our diversity and inclusion committee has talked in the past about doing LEAD events with food from different cultures, so that is something we hope might happen in our new downstairs space,” said Lacey Sweeten Randall, Director of Student Involvement. “It is just one example of the many possibilities this new center will provide for us.”
The new space also provides the convenience of having three Student Life offices now together and located in one place on campus, inside of Brockman.
“Having Diversity and Inclusion, Center for Student Involvement, Career Services and the Student Transition together is a real plus,” said Amy Dittmer, Director of Career Services and Student Transition. “Brockman is now a one- stop shop for many student resources.”
“Up until now, the only student center space we had on campus was inside McNutt Campus Center around the Owl’s Nest,” said Randall. “We needed additional space for student groups to use and for all of our departments, and Brockman Student Center provides that for our students.”
“Now with multiple Student Life offices together, we hope for some overlap of student use,” Dittmer added. “Since we are all together, I can have someone coming to work on their resume with me; then they can stop across the hall and talk to Lacey about campus involvement, or they can walk down the hall and visit Darianne Maclin (WWU Director of Diversity and Inclusion) to talk about a diversity and inclusion event. It will now be very convenient.”
WWU students living on campus now have a new space they can utilize for a variety of purposes, whether it’s studying, relaxing, having meetings, doing interviews, playing games, watching television, or just plain hanging out.
“I think having all the hangout spots in Brockman is really cool since we didn’t really have many before,” said junior Sarah Ostertag. “We needed more space for us to utilize and Brockman now provides it.”
“My friends and I live in separate buildings, so the current visitation policy (due to COVID-19) has been challenging for us,” said senior Madison Crosswhite. “Brockman has given us a space to get together and watch Netflix as a group, or play Mario Kart. It is awesome that we have this space to be able to get together safely.”
Since Brockman now has a new purpose, it needs some improvement to help serve students the best way possible. Student Life hopes to renovate the restrooms, add signage and other equipment such as water bottle fillers like others that can be found around campus, among other projects. It is a work in progress, but one that definitely represents some important progress in the campus experience for students at The Woods.
For more information on Student Life at William Woods, please visit https://www.williamwoods.edu/student_experience/index.html