A new Student Hub will be built on the first two floors of Republic Polytechnic’s W1 block where the Wellness Centre, Student Services Centre, and Interest Group (IG) rooms are currently located.
To make way for the new facility, IGs with club rooms will have to give up their current space set aside for them. The IGs affected include the Student Council, International Club, Service Learning Club, Adventure Learning Club and school-based clubs.
Instead of individual club rooms, half of the space at the new Student Hub will become a shared space where all IGs can access if they make a booking. The other half of the area will be set aside for students seeking financial and emotional assistance.
The idea behind creating a shared space is to encourage IGs to share the facilities. Mr Ganesh Kalyanam, director of the Office of Student and Graduate Affairs, said: “It forces everyone to share. It teaches students the life skills of negotiating with each other.”
Anaqi Bin Anzari, 20, the president of Photo IG, is against the change. “The IG room was like a family room for all of us at Photo Republic,” said the third-year Interactive and Digital Media student. “It is a place where strong family bonds were created. We were saddened by the news, but we got to accommodate to a similar space.”
To address this concern, store rooms will be created for various IGs at their individual school pods. New meeting rooms will also be built at the new Student Hub for IGs to hold meetings.
Renovation on the new Student Hub is scheduled to begin in Sept, 2016 and work is expected to be completed a month later. The Student Hub will open in 2017 to coincide with RP’s 15th anniversary.
Helmy Rozaimi Bin Husaimi, a second-year IT Service Management student and vice president of the Student Council, is supportive of the addition of the new Student Hub. “I believe that we can enhance our One RP spirit through sharing of spaces at the Student Hub,” said the 26-year-old.