By Melissa Prentice
Arizona Daily Wildcat
The Student Union depends on buckets to catch the rain and patch-up projects to temporarily fix safety hazards, but can now depend on a new director to fix these problems.
Daniel Adams, the director of the Student Union at West Virginia University, agreed to fill the $60,000-per-year position and lead the Union through a $30 to $50 million renovation, Dean of Students Melissa Vito announced last night.
“He is the candidate that the campus community was really behind; during all of the discussions, during the candidate’s campus visits, he really came out on top,” she said. “I am really glad he accepted the offer.”
Adams, who will step into the position July 1, recently supervised a renovation that added Wendy’s, Taco Bell and Little Caesar’s Pizza to the West Virginia Union, making it, in Adams’ words, “one of the best in the country.” He said in a previous interview that the challenge of fixing the problems of the UA’s Union is what attracts him to this job.
“I enjoyed doing the renovation of the (WVU) Union, but I know I will not see another major project there in the near future,” he said. “I am curious and interested in seeing other things.”
He said he senses that there is a lot of interest in “doing something with the Union,” whether it is renovation or rebuilding, and said he is excited about helping to shape the future of the Union.
“I can’t wait to listen to what the students want in their Union and to apply my skills and experience to the Union there,” he said.
The hardest thing, he said, is that he “has a lot of history to catch up on.”
He will be visiting the UA next week and said he hopes to start meeting students and the Union employees soon.
Mike Low, interim director of the Student Union, said he is delighted that Adams was chosen. Of the four finalists, Adams was his first choice.
Low said he has not had any conversations about what his responsibilities will be under the new director but plans to work closely with Adams in preparing information that he will need for the position.
“I don’t know how he works ... we’ll need time to learn about each other,” Low said.
Petri Darby, the organizer of the student panel who interviewed the candidates, said he is excited about Adams’ commitment to involve student input in the future of the Union.
“He wants to make students a big part of what will be the future of the Union,” Darby said. “He is ready to take on a big challenge and he will have to here.”
Wildcat reporter Amanda Hunt contributed to this story.
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