Evan Thue –

The process for renovating the Johnson Fieldhouse has gotten underway earlier this month with the first of three meetings taking place on Feb. 4.

“The meetings are primarily to spread the word about the referendum now. Our goal with the meetings was to spread the word of our work, but now that we have a referendum date, we need students to vote,” said student Jason Graves. Graves has been involved with not only the planning process, but also helping to set up the meetings.

The referendum date has been confirmed to be April 11 with students getting to choose between three different options, with all three options focused on “renovating spaces and creating more open recreation space,” said Graves. The later two options will also waive membership fees and will allow all students access to the facilities without having to purchase a membership.

Graves isn’t the only one working on this process of setting up these meetings. He is working with Tim Nelson, Madeline Ramich, Gary Gust, Justin Uptadel, as well as some Stout Student Association members moderating.

“The committee consists of many pro-staff in the department and building, as well as pro-staff from other positions among Stout. There have been many students and faculty that have been involved over the years of planning,” said Graves.

The process for this whole thing has been very interesting for Graves. “For me, it has been a lot of learning,” he said. “We meet almost weekly and discuss plans for our presentation, ways we can out reach more effectively and looking at the future for getting students involved”.

Graves greatly encourages for anyone to show up to the meetings and voice their support, raise concerns, or ask questions. With the vote taking place on April 11, there will be two more meetings: one on Feb 20 at 7 p.m. in the Cedar/Maple Room of the MSC and Mar 14 at 7 p.m. in Ballroom C of the MSC.