Over the summer, Rosauer’s downstairs study space underwent renovations. What was once a computer lab is now an Active Learning Center (ALC) with white boards and monitors to help students with their studies. The renovated study space offers a variety of individual and group work spaces consisting of booths, tables, couches and individual desks areas.
“The new study space feels like the midground between the social Hemmingson Center and the study space of the library,” said Cynthia Smutny, the budget director for the school of education.
“[The ALC is] not built like a traditional study area, so you can work on school work and it helps to release stress,” freshman Felecia Bazie said.
Planning and funding Rosauer’s new ALC took a while, Smutny said. The ALC was “designed to be an open collaborative space to be used by students, faculty and staff,” she added.
Shoesmith Cox Architects drew the original designs, which were hung around Rosauer so students and faculty members could provide feedback on the plan. Now, administration is excited to see how students develop and use the space.
“We have a much higher student traffic rate through Rosauer. The ALC has become a quiet study area that is visited on weekday evenings and weekends,” said Smutny.
While the school of education’s administration thinks the foot traffic is good, senior Kristina Jones, a special education major, said the student traffic can be negative in terms of noise, distraction and being more crowded.
Jones also said there was more of a community feel when people using the study spaces were also the people who attended your classes.
Campbell Dougherty, a first year education major, said the ALC is ideal for both individual and group study sessions. Melendez and Jess Berg, who study in Rosauer nightly, said they agree that the ALC is an accessible space with resources for group study. The ALC was constructed with the hope of creating a quiet work space; however, this “academic work space will be defined by those who use it,” said Vincent Alfonso, dean of the School of Education.
Sophomore Evan Currin said the SpikeNites team meets in the ALC to plan upcoming events. Kelley Morley said she thinks the ALC is “hands on study space where people can collaborate.” She said the movable whiteboards are a good way to study for her biology class. Junior Willy Duguay says he studies in the ALC almost every day.
The goal of the design council was to create a study space that attracted people of all majors, explained Smutny.
“We hoped that the study space would be open to all. We will be able to share the ALC across campus with all students,” Smutny said, continuing to explain that the school of education administration hopes this will bring some diversity and variety of Gonzaga students from across campus to study here.
“My hope is that this Active Learning Center is a model for the development of other Active Learning Centers on campus,” said Alfonso.
Kaely Lawler is a staff writer.