Hub removed, converted to visitor’s center

This Fall, students have had to say goodbye to The Hub.

Starting in August, the Office of Student Activities and Facilities decided with Event Management to convert The Hub, which provided the Duke community with discounted tickets to local cultural events­, into strictly a Visitor’s Information Center. The conversion was born of the ongoing reorganization of the two campus administrative offices. Under the new changes, the information desk will become a separate entity and students will be able to purchase discounted tickets for Durham and Duke events at the University Box Office, OSAF Assistant Director Kyle Fox said.

“We felt like if we redirected our efforts, we could have a win-win situation by providing services for [visitors to Duke] and maintaining Hub services for students,” OSAF Director Chris Roby said.

Marcy Edenfield, systems manager for the University Box Office and Information Systems noted that Hub offerings have always been met with fantastic responses from the Duke community. Students’ overall positive response to The Hub factored into the decision to maintain its services while creating the Visitor’s Information Center.

“We’re maintaining the spirit of what the Hub offered in the past, and I think that’s a good thing,” OSAF Program Coordinator Janicanne Shane said.

Students have been utilizing The Hub since its inception in September 2009.

“[The Hub] shows that Duke supports the community instead of being isolated from it,” freshman Deborah Mayers said.

Senior Ubong Akpaninyie, director of multicultural outreach and affairs for Duke Student Government, said he has purchased tickets from The Hub before, adding that he values having the service available.

“It’s two-fold,” Akpaninyie said. “It shows that art is not only at Duke—it’s also in Durham.”

Roby said The Hub utilized social networking sites such as Twitter and Facebook to publicize the program and stay in contact with students. These efforts to reach out to the Duke community will be preserved under the new model.

One of the major goals of The Hub was to help connect students to Durham by way of discounted ticket sales and to foster a stronger sense of togetherness, Fox said. In spite of the new changes, administrators aim to maintain the original function of The Hub.

“We are currently working on new initiatives to build a stronger relationship [between students and the Durham community],” he added.

Though the changes have begun with a slow start and little publicity, Roby said he believes the new system will more efficiently provide for the Duke community.

“Our goal is ultimately to create the best services for students and the University community,” Roby said.


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