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Student lounge reopens after vandalism, uncleanliness

By Mathew Ursua | Ka La editor

After being shut for two weeks because of trash and vandalism problems, the Student Lounge in Building 2 was reopened for activity on the day before Thanksgiving break.

Student Life and Development workers said they planned to keep it open, despite finding new evidence that somebody left gum on one of the chairs.

Student Life employee Javele Kaneakua said that her office decided to give students a second chance to prove they can treat the lounge better.

Kaleo Gagne, ASUH-HCC student president, took pictures with his iPhone in early November as Student Life officials showed him the damages.

The pictures show felt-tip pen graffiti on new furniture, food crumbs scattered about, and food wrappers left in the open.

MELE major Tyrell Cherry, who knew about the circumstances behind the closure, said that the decision was “drastic but necessary.”

“I didn’t like it,” he said.  “I was trying to do my work with the wind blowing outside.”

Cherry said the lounge is his “chill spot.”

Gagne was instrumental in the decision to shut down the lounge, along with Hillary Brown, who was the acting leader of Student Life while Director Emily Kukulies was out on leave.

The lounge, which is used by scores of students every day, is one of the few places on campus where students can eat, relax and study at the same time. It received almost $60,000 in new furniture at the start of this year.

Gagne said he was disappointed as he was shown the graffiti and rubbish.