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14 November 2011
Space-cabin style booths where students can Skype in comfort and a kitchen table-sized touch screen are just some of the features of a state-of-the-art lounge in the Students’ Union.
Created in direct response to international student feedback, the Lounge has transformed the Union’s former games and snooker room into the very latest social space that reflects Cardiff’s multi-cultural population. It was officially opened by Cardiff’s Vice-Chancellor, Dr David Grant on 14 November 2011.
As well as offering modern facilities for all of Cardiff’s students, the Lounge has specifically addressed calls from international students for more common space and an area where group work and socialising could be made easier.
Amongst its features are secluded zones providing a relaxed, personal space for students to Skype home. A giant map of the world full of images from students’ homelands is a focal point for the lounge and comes complete with LED lighting which is programmed to sync with the movement of the sun, giving a visual indication of the time in different global regions. The Lounge is also alcohol-free.
Ben Eagle, Students’ Union events manager and project officer for the new lounge, said: "The concept came from feedback to last year’s student officers, that while the Union is great for the typical student, there were some needs that weren’t being met. As well as the international students, the sports clubs and societies wanted places to meet. People also wanted a computer room that didn’t feel like a computer room – somewhere you could go on-line in a social environment, without feeling you were in work mode, sitting in banks of screens."
The lounge offers a variety of spaces for students. Two meeting rooms have display screens embedded in their walls and larger booths are equipped with screens which can sit four people – ideal for study groups who want to meet informally.
There are charge points for iPads and iPhones and the kitchen has been developed as a worldwide space that transcends cultural differences and includes a 42 inch wall TV and interactive touch top table.
Sandra Elliott, Director of Communications and International Relations said: "Cardiff has a diverse student population drawn from around the globe. This new Lounge offers students a great opportunity to mix outside the classroom. It helps boost the presence of international students within the Students’ Union and gives all students access to the latest technology to meet their study and social needs."
The Lounge is sponsored by The Print Centre, Cardiff.
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