Amid the whirrs of ellipticals, the stench of sweat, the grunts of weightlifters and the concentration of runners on treadmills, a handful of students focus on one thing: making the Health United Building (HUB) a more welcoming place.
As membership service representatives at the HUB, their daily tasks include signing people up for memberships, swiping members in, cleaning the facility, washing and drying towels and monitoring the floors.
Junior finance major Chris Fazio noted that a large element of their role at the service desk is a welcoming attitude.
“We’re the face of the HUB, the first thing people see when they come in,” Fazio said.
Along with Fazio, sophomore marketing major Grace McGinnis worked at the O’Connor Sports Center before transferring to the HUB. They noticed that a lot has changed with the new building.
“At least double the amount of people are coming in here,” McGinnis said, comparing attendance to that of O’Connor. She theorized the growing attendance level may be linked to the closer proximity of most student housing to the HUB.
“The building in general cultivates a welcoming environment,” sophomore Philosophy, Politics and the Public and political science student Lizzy Parker said.
“It’s a lot bigger, obviously. It makes it a lot nicer to be here,” Fazio added. “It’s not super densely packed, and there’s a lot of space to spread out. It doesn’t feel super crowded.”
Parker also explained that this helps the HUB to smell drastically better than its predecessor, something which Fazio believes is due to a better regulation of temperature on the basketball courts and in the building.
The workers also noted that new amenities have increased interest for many students, citing some of their favorite aspects of the new location.
“For me, it’s the amount of new equipment we have,” Fazio said. “(At O’Connor,) you’d have to tailor what you’re doing around other people, but now there’s so many more machines.”
When asked about the best part of working at the HUB, all three were in agreement: the community.
“I love our staff. They’re just great people,” McGinnis said of her coworkers.
“Even wiping down equipment and stuff like that, I don’t find that to be annoying in any way,” Parker said. “It sounds really stupid, but pretty much my whole job I find fun and interesting, even when it’s mundane.”
Parker and Fazio, whose first on-campus jobs were at O’Connor and the HUB, respectively, noted that the close-knit community made it a fulfilling experience.
“I think it’s a good first campus job to have. Out of all the campus jobs I could be doing, this is definitely the best,” Parker said.
“It helps me gain skills for internships, keeps my interpersonal skills sharp by engaging in customer service,” Fazio said, noting the universality of skills developed working at the HUB.
“The staff are so friendly. Working as a freshman here, you get to meet a whole bunch of people right off the bat,” Fazio said. “It’s still work, but you get to make friends along the way. That’s the best part of this job.”
Students can visit the HUB and its employees from 6 a.m. to midnight Monday through Thursday, with varying weekend hours posted online.