Students at West Virginia University have organized a petition to have the school’s rec center reopened for the spring semester.
Jakob Janoski started a petition on Change.org, directing his concerns to university president Gordon Gee.
“I figured that if I want something done, I should do it myself, and that meant starting a petition,” Janoski told the The Daily Athenaeum. “We [students] need a place to have recreation, and with proper precautions in place it’s possible to make the gyms safe.”
The petition currently has about 2,000 signatures.
“I thought that the petition would fizzle out after about 500 signatures, but I’ve been proven wrong,” Janoski said. “People really do want the Rec to open. The students are tired of paying for their own gym memberships. I think that could be why people are so passionate about it.”
Janoski lamented what he sees as the university’s lack of transparency.
“If they [the University] gave a reasonable answer as to why the Rec was still closed, I don’t think that we as a student body would have a problem with it remaining closed,” Janoski said. “I do believe that the students deserve to know exactly why it’s closed. Honesty is the best policy.”
The rec center has operated as a COVID-19 testing and vaccination location since the fall 2020 semester, and it will continue to be used for those purposes throughout the spring 2021 semester. Exercise programs and equipment rentals will still be available throughout the semester.