ASUC launches late-night program in Wheeler Hall

Michael Drummond/Senior Staff

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The ASUC launched a program Sept. 15 that offers campus late-night study areas and gathering spaces for students and student groups.

The Wheeler Late Night Program opens 25 of Wheeler Hall’s classrooms to students between 10 p.m. and 2 a.m. Monday through Thursday. Students can make advance reservations online or same-day bookings, depending on availability. The Student Organization Services, or SOS, department under the executive vice president’s office collaborated with ASUC Event Services to create the program.

According to co-director of SOS Diana Nguyen, the program resulted from former ASUC executive vice president Nolan Pack’s efforts to provide funding and meeting spaces for student groups.

Current EVP Justin Kong said the project has been in the works for nearly two years.

Kong attributed the success of the project to the cooperation of several departments, including the Events Services office, EVP office, UCPD, the Office of the Registrar and Physical Plant-Campus Services, which came together to address students’ need for study areas beyond traditional hours.

“We have all these facilities, but because of security issues, we never open them up,” Kong said. “If you have 36,000 students, you can’t expect that the libraries and the (Student Learning Center) will provide space for all these students.”

Kong noted that the security measures and logistics of opening buildings late at night in addition to coordinating with so many entities was a hindrance in the past.

Co-president of the Korean American Student Association Haylie Kim said she was excited when she heard about the program.

“It’s nice when we have a classroom space to meet, because we do have a lot of last-minute meetings, and we end up having them at people’s houses, which is less formal in terms of the organizational structure we want to have for our group,” Kim said.

Nguyen said that while one of the EVP office’s priorities is safety, it will work to make the environment conducive to students’ productivity by minimizing the need for UCPD presence.

Lt. Marc DeCoulode said UCPD has provided some security training to a few Event Services staff, but UCPD will still conduct “some frequent patrol checks.”

DeCoulode added that the program is in its trial stage, because there are currently no other campus buildings open as late.

The Lower Sproul Redevelopment Project, though separate from the program, will also open a late-night study space that is open 24 hours per day. Kong said that the program fills the gap between now and the opening of the Student Union complex. But his office is still deciding how long the program will run after the complex opens.

“Even with the opening of the new center, I’m confident that this will help students for a really long time,” Kong said.

Contact Suhauna Hussain at [email protected] and follow her on Twitter @suhaunah.

Due to misinformation from a source, a previous version of this article incorrectly called the Student Organization Services the Student Organizational Services.