by Geoff Larcom, Published October 15, 2013
YPSILANTI – The Eastern Michigan University Student Center ranks among the best college student unions in America, according to a national ranking service that seeks to inform students about the interesting trends and features on campuses around the country.
Best College Reviews, located in Grandville, Mich., rated the EMU Student Center fourth in its list of the 25 best student unions.
The Student Center is arguably the most striking building on Eastern’s campus. Its entire east side is glass, with its three floors looking out over ponds and the rest of campus. The Center is easily accessible, and has ample parking. It plays host to hundreds of events annually, including talks by nationally renowned scholars, numerous area charity functions and high school proms.
“Ever since it was first (opened) in (Nov.) 2006, the EMU Student Center has become an incredible center to the campus life at Eastern Michigan University,” Best College Reviews wrote. “The $40.5 million union offers student services, several restaurant chain dining facilities, the athletic box office, the admissions office and a Chase Bank branch.
“It also became home for the first LAN Gaming Center, called the E-Zone, where students can participate in multi-player games with their peers on Wii, Xbox and PlayStation.
“The student center is also well known for its Kiva Room, a round 360-degree room designed after those in Native American cultures. Situated on the north side of the second floor, the Kiva Room is utilized for musical shows, conference spaces and student group collaborations.”
This past summer, the Center opened the Francine Parker Advising Center on the first floor. The advising center is modeled after modern technology retail centers, in which roaming advisers in the front area can rapidly respond to short inquiries and help navigate students through updated online resources regarding academic and career planning. Housed in the rear of the facility is a state-of-the-art training room, to be used for small group sessions and conferencing.
The student union for Oklahoma State, which houses a luxury hotel and is the largest facility of its kind in the country, ranked No. 1, ahead of the University of West Virginia, Ohio State University and Eastern. The University of Michigan Union ranked No. 7, with a nod to its historical status, while no other unions at Michigan universities made the top 25.
Best College Reviews says its ranking of college student union buildings attempts to be all encompassing, using factors such as architectural distinction and student satisfaction.
BestCollegeReviews.org reviews publicly available data and then produces independent ranking assessments of various educational programs and features, as well as student guides and resources.
The review service says it seeks to produce college rankings and resources that are useful to prospective and current students in higher education.
For the complete list of top student unions, please see http://www.bestcollegereviews.org/features/most-amazing-campus-student-unions/