BY: SELENA GONZALEZ
With the fall semester nearing the halfway point, many CSULB students head to the University Student Union (USU) for breaks of fun and excitement throughout the day. Others utilize the USU as a place for studying and catching up on homework during their free time.
It is a great getaway after the school day or if you're tired of all that peace and quiet from the library or Horn Center. Sometimes going for a walk or hitting the gym is not enough, or you've done it so many times it has become a chore.
The USU is a place many of us know, as it's pretty popular on campus for the many things it has to offer, such as food and camaraderie. It provides a variety of places for grabbing a bite or just relaxing.
“I spend so much time in the Union that I practically live here,” Alex Ramos, editor in chief of the Long Beach Union Weekly, said. “When I'm not at the office, I'm bowling with my girlfriend.”
He said he spends plenty of time on the first floor of the USU, as that is where the Union Weekly’s office is located. When he wants to get away from the stress of both school and work, he puts on his bowling shoes and faces off against his girlfriend on one of the USU’s 10 bowling lanes.
“I spend a lot of time thinking due to my major, and when I want to give my brain a break and have some fun I usually go play ping pong,” psychology major Christopher Orozco said.
Orozco, like Ramos, spends plenty of on the first floor of the USU as the distribution manager for the Union Weekly. When he wants to get away, he grabs a paddle, a ball and a buddy before heading off to one of the two available ping pong tables on the USU’s first floor.
Sean Robinson, information technician at KBeach and the CSULB Associated Students Inc., said he spends most of his time at the USU on the first floor.
When he wants to have some fun, he heads for the Sticks Lounge, which houses the video-game stations in the USU. There are two Nintendo Wiis, three Xbox 360’s, three PlayStation 3’s, a PlayStation 4 and an Xbox One available for students to play. As a sports fan, he said he prefers to play “Madden.” His go-to team in the game is his favorite real-life team, the Oakland Raiders.
But these aren't the only activities people can take part in at the USU. There is also a pool for swimming, as well as monthly free movie showings at the USU Beach Auditorium, and even a giant version of Connect Four. The USU’s first floor also houses a shuffleboard, foosball table and an air-hockey table that offers the cheapest entertainment available in the building at just 50 cents per game.
The tables found all over the USU’s bottom floor are also home to impromptu games of cards.
Happy hour is held Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 11 a.m. and 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. During the fall and spring semesters, the pool is free for all, but during the summer it’s only for free students.
So if you’re ever looking to make some new friends or try your hand at any of the activities listed above, the USU is the place to be.