The Kegley Center, a building designated for helping student-athletes academically, has resources being taken by non-student-athletes.
Non-student-athletes are using the Kegley Center for resources more specifically dedicated to student-athletes, such as printing and food services. It is not illegal for non-athletes to use the center, but faculty members and students alike have said that this is an issue.
Dena Freeman-Patton, deputy athletics director at CSU Bakersfield, oversees the Kegley Center and said the building’s intended purpose is for those playing a sport.
“The [Kegley Center is] primarily for student athletes because a large chunk of the funds came from the NCAA grant for the purpose of improving academic support for student-athletes,” said Patton.
According to the CSUB website, the Kegley Center was funded in part from a donation by Dr. Jacquelyn Kegley, who committed over $200,000 to the center and scholarship funds.
Melissa Bowen, assistant director of academic support for CSUB athletics, said that though the center is open for all students, some services are not meant for those who don’t play a sport.
“It’s actually our policy, the center itself is open to all students on campus. We’ve made it very clear [previously], though there are a few services that are not… like the lending library, nutrition bar, and our scheduled tutoring.”
The Kegley Center also houses a computer lab and study rooms in addition to its nutritional services.
Susannah Vera, 21, a senior theatre major and track and field athlete, said she knows that the center is not only for student-athletes and appreciates having the resources it provides.
“[The Kegley Center] was designed for athletes, and it would be nice if only athletes got to use the facility. However, I don’t see it being helpful for us to enforce that because people already think athletes get unfair advantages, when in reality we work really hard for [them]. I’m always running from place to place, so [having these resources] is really nice to grab if you’re running from practice to class. I know anyone can use it, I don’t see it being a huge issue,” said Vera.
The issue has been affecting all CSUB athletes who use the Kegley Center.
Sabrina Delgado, 20, a junior environmental resource management major and center midfielder for the women’s soccer team, said she was concerned by the limited number of resources the Kegley Center can provide.
“I believe resources should be open to all students…but sometimes the limited resources makes it difficult for others to access [them]. Maybe we could limit the number of students who aren’t athletes in there. I go in there to study, print stuff out, work on the computer, and get tutoring if I need to. If I was in charge, I would open up another center to help students,” said Delgado.
Student-wide communication was suggested by faculty regarding what resources are and are not available to all students.
Melissa Medina-Cruz, assistant director of academic advising for athletics, said that communication is key for preventing too many resources being taken.
“Maybe [we could make students aware] that there are specific resources for student athletes. I have noticed that non-student-athletes may not be aware there are team studies halls, so they’ll come in and I’ll ask them if they could utilize another space in the Kegley,” said Medina-Cruz.
Patton also said she hopes that the system will be better for both regular students and student-athletes in the future.
“Hopefully we’ll have a more structured system [in the future], unfortunately our resources don’t allow us to provide for all students,” said Patton.
Just like any other area on campus, the Kegley Center can only provide so much for the student-athletes.
Another solution from faculty was for those who run the center to keep a closer eye on who uses resources from the Kegley Center.
Roy Lefever, professor of chemistry and faculty athletics representative at CSUB, was involved in the planning stages of the center and believes that the reception area should pay more attention to who comes in and out.
“I think maybe the reception area is going to have to keep a closer eye on things. [We need to] get the message out to the students that the facility is…available for all students, but not to abuse it,” said Lefever.