According to Goucher College’s Position Profile, “Wellness [and] physical fitness… have been an integral part from the very beginning” (5). In order to facilitate this promise of physical education, located on the bottom of the SRC, the weight room is open to all students committed to staying in shape. Such a commitment requires a great deal of energy, motivation, and time; however, in regards to gym weight room availability, how committed is Goucher to its students?
As many Goucher gym-going, gain-getting gophers with great guns know, the hours at the weight room have been unreasonably shortened. Last year, the gym used to be open 7:00 AM to midnight on weekdays. This meant that those extra motivated students could wake up early and work out before class at 8:30. Conversely, people who wanted to go after a late class or practice could get a lift in before bed at midnight. Unfortunately for many this year, it isn’t open till 9:00 AM and closes at 9:00 PM; the gym is exclusively available during the same hours that classes are held. If a student is busy all day and has class or practice in the evening, there is no opportunity to go to the gym at all. You might be there for the gym, but unfortunately, it is no longer there for you.
These shortened hours have had a dramatic effect on student life. One student talked about the frustrations of the limited hours: “The gym isn’t open outside of class time. It’s possible to be in class from 9 AM to 9 PM; when am I supposed to go to the gym?” The shortened hours have also lead to the gym to be significantly more crowded. With less time available, there are fewer opportunities for students to find time to go to the gym. Typically, any time between 3:30 and 4:00 was crowded last year, despite plenty of time in the evening. In contrast, during the same time frame this year the gym is completely swamped. Some students have been forced to stop their workout early because of the influx of people looking to work out.
Student workers have had to cut their payable hours due to the new gym times. Instead of working to midnight, workers can only work till 9 PM. Fewer work hours directly correlates to less student revenue; students have less money to put toward their expensive education at Goucher, less money to spend on expensive books, and less money to spend on expensive food. Students are upset that the hours have been shortened; hopefully things will change.