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A day at the Student Union Memorial Center

DAVID HARDEN/Arizona Summer Wildcat
Tucsonan Curtis Foley tops off a Pepsi yesterday at ON Deck Deli in the Memorial Student Union. ON Deck Deli is in the food court along with Panda Express, McDonalds, Domino's, Chik-fil-A.
By Kylee Dawson
Arizona Daily Wildcat
Wednesday, July 28, 2004
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In between classes, most students at the University of Arizona like to grab a bite to eat, or perhaps print out a research paper. Some might even want to get a haircut, make flight reservations or catch a movie.

All of these things, and a lot more, can be done at the Student Union Memorial Center (SUMC) located at the heart of UA.

The SUMC, first built in 1951, was reopened in 2003 after three years of renovations and expansions. Several restaurants and retail stores were added, including STA Travel and a Wells Fargo Bank branch.

For $3, UA students are able to watch films (new and old) at the Gallagher Theater, which was remodeled with modern theater seating as well as improved sound quality and projection facilities.

In addition to books (for class and leisure), the UA Bookstore houses a Clinique counter and a Mojo Records music store.

There is also a post office and, for stationary needs, a Fast Copy.

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No appointment is needed to get a cheap haircut at Great Clips.

Most of all, the SUMC provides students with a wide variety of places to eat, socialize and chill out.


The Cactus Grill, located on the third level of the SUMC, is a full-fledged cafeteria that serves breakfast, lunch and dinner from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. during the school year.

There are also dozens of restaurants to choose from, most of which are located on the second level. McDonald's, Panda Express and Domino's are some of the better-known restaurants, but there are several others frequented by UA students.

Chick-fil-A is a chicken sandwich place that offers sandwiches, nuggets and waffle fries.

On the Deck offers gourmet custom sandwiches, soups and other healthy items.

There are several other small restaurants, such as Café Sonora (Mexican), Redington Restaurant (all-you-can-eat buffet) and Three Cheeses & a Noodle (Italian).

Students can get coffee at Java Jive and the Canyon Cafe & Bistro, which also serves ice cream.

For students on the run, the UMart Convenience Store is the quickest place to grab groceries, sandwiches, drinks and other snacks.

Wilbur's Underground, located on the basement level, also has food in addition to a computer lab, games, billiards and a TV lounge.

After playing pool, students eat at the Cellar Restaurant & Lounge, which offers breakfast as well as burgers and fries.

Students kick it at the SUMC

Darren Portner, an undecided sophomore, said he likes to eat at McDonald's because, "it's cheap and good."

"I eat at Panda Express 'cause I love the orange chicken," he said.

Portner also frequents Wilbur's Underground to work on class assignments and play games.

"I use the computer lab for homework," he said. "And I get my video game fix there."

Alessandra Uentillie, an English education senior, also eats at McDonald's and On the Deck.

"I usually have the dollar menu at McDonald's," Uentillie said. "At the deli place, I have the tuna sandwich and the macaroni salad. I don't like fish, but that's the only place I eat tuna."

Uentillie also said she goes to the post office to mail things to her brother in Iraq.

"It's the closest post office I go to," she said.

As the social director of the sorority Alpha Pi Omega and the president of the Native Cats UNITY Council, Uentillie said she also goes to Fast Copy to print out fliers for events.

UNITY (United National Indian Tribal Youth) is just one of several clubs and organizations housed by Student Commuter Affairs, located in the SUMC on the fourth level.

Most students at UA are considered "commuter students" because only about one sixth of the student body lives in on-campus dorms. Therefore, the staff at Commuter Student Affairs provides services that appeal to the UA's diverse community.

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