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Students still want longer weekend hours at the RAC

Remember how you promised yourself you’d build that highly coveted six pack when you first entered college or how you’d shed some of that excess weight as part of your new year’s resolution?

Whether or not those dreams came true, the Retriever Activity Center serves as a one stop shop for many of your fitness needs. With treadmills for cardio as well as a variety of weights and machines, the RAC can help you mold that perfect beach body you yearn for.

However, for some students it seems like the most convenient times to go the RAC are also convenient for everyone else. During the week, it can take ages to land a bench and finally get in different exercises. Additionally, for those who prefer sports, the courts are often crowded during the week and it becomes a challenge to find an open spot.

Going to the RAC during the weekend alleviates the crowding issue, but with it brings other logistical problems. On Fridays, the RAC closes at 9:00 p.m., an hour earlier than Monday through Thursday. On Saturdays and Sundays, the RAC is only open six hours, from 12:00 p.m. until 6:00 p.m., and these times aren’t always the most convenient, especially for those who have day plans.

Two options exist to fix these problems. One involves building another facility. The new Events Center may actually be that solution, although it may not solve the overcrowding of the gym on weekdays. The other option involves extending the hours of the RAC, either beyond 10:00 p.m. on the weekdays and Friday or beyond 6:00 p.m. on the weekends.

But how popular would this be? After all, UMBC would have to pay RAC staff to serve these extended hours. To find out, The Retriever surveyed a few students about whether or not they would appreciate an elongation of RAC services.

Josh Youn, a sophomore mathematics and economics double major, said that he would really appreciate extra RAC hours.

“I have frisbee activities on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays and I’m ultra busy with homework on Tuesdays and Thursdays, which means I only get to hit the gym for about one or two hours during the week,” said Youn.

“Even when I do go to the gym,” said Youn. “You have got a ton of people already there and I can’t always do my bench work outs because I’m strapped for time.”

Luke Richards, a sophomore computer science major, expressed a desire for longer hours. He believes that the RAC should open earlier on the weekends.

“I think it would be much better if the RAC had morning weekend hours so that students would have more time to go and hit the gym,” said Richards. “People have a lot of work to get done during the week, whether it be due to homework or other obligations and for many, the only time they’re free is during the weekend.”

An extension of weekend hours at the RAC appears to be the preferred option among students, as it would allow them to fit in time to work out. Although monetary issues must also be considered, perhaps the university could solve this problem by shortening hours during the week.

RAC staff were not available for a response.