Student Community Center Foundation Plans For New Center

Organizers of the proposed Student Community Center­, which would house space for student gatherings at the Democracy Center at 45 Mount Auburn Street­, met in Boylston Hall last night to present their plans on the center’s construction, design, and finances.

Joshua J. Nuni ’10, president of the Student Community Center Foundation, said he anticipates the SCC will open in 2013 despite the need to raise 10 to 15 million dollars in order to begin construction, hire consultants and lawyers, and fund an endowment to maintain the center.

Nuni spoke to an audience of around ten last night, updating the attendees—most of whom were members of the SCCF—on its progress.

According to Nuni, only $5,025 has been raised to date. Seven-hundred dollars of that sum was raised over the summer by the Undergraduate Council, which turned over the controversial effort to create the center to the SCCF on Oct. 5.

Nuni said that by February the SCCF needs to raise “a few hundred thousand dollars more in pledges” for its short-term needs. These include developing fiscal legitimacy and paying for a staff of advisers and lawyers from the real estate law firm Goulston & Storrs, many of whom are currently working pro bono.

“We have a very clear idea of what our fundraising goals are in the short term, so we’re going to be reaching out to all the people we’ve talked about the idea who’ve blessed it,” he said.

Nuni said that the College administration has been tepid in their support for the endeavor despite strong student support.

“Our relationship with the administration is basically that I don’t think it’s been cemented yet,” he said. “We have an ideological blessing from them. They think what we’re doing is good, but I don’t think until we have more success that they’re willing to sign on to the project.”

About 1200 students have signed an online declaration of support for the SCCF, according to SCCF member Samuel A. Harrison ’10-’11.

Erica Adrienne Tsacoyeanes ’10, a member of the SCCF, said that the student support is what drives the SCCF.

“I think that the whole beauty of the SCCF is that it’s very grassroots,” she said. “I keep hearing that word over and over again, and I’m proud of that.”

—Staff writer Melody Y. Hu can be reached at melodyhu@fas.harvard.edu.

—Staff writer Naveen N. Srivatsa can be reached at srivatsa@fas.harvard.edu.

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