Aaronson Student Center opens to undergraduate students

Mia Gindis, Opinions Editor

Baruch College opened its first permanent student center, called the Allen G. and Mary E. Aaronson Student Center, to undergraduate students on Nov. 1 in a step toward fostering an on-campus community.

The completion of the student center, located within the historic U.S. Post Office on East 24th Street, comes just as many Baruch students are making the transition from entirely online learning to in-person classes.

“The Aaronson Student Center promises to be a dynamic and energizing new space for students to socialize, study together, and build community,” Baruch President S. David Wu said in a press release.

In 2017, Baruch entered a 15-year lease agreement with the U.S. Post Office to acquire rights to part of the lower level of the building.

Nearly five years later, the 5,500-square-foot space will offer designated meeting areas for Baruch’s over 130 student clubs and organizations.

The center has a large multipurpose room, lounge areas and meeting spaces, complete with inviting accents like colorful furniture and high ceilings. Students can find the entrance on East 24th Street.

“It’s a step in the right direction as Baruch can shift to more in-person opportunities for students, especially because more people are coming back to campus and they need a place to go in between their classes as commuters,” sophomore Emma Sassouni said. “Hopefully more things will open up parallel to the Aaronson building.”

Sassouni, who is currently working as the Macaulay Scholars Council representative for the Baruch class of 2024, describes having trouble finding a social area to hold team meetings.

“Sometimes, at the most congested times, it can be hard to get into the main library because there are so many people going there between classes,” Sassouni said.

The student center was funded by the donations of its namesake, the late Allen Aaronson from the class of 1948 and his wife, Mary Aaronson. The two were among Baruch’s most generous benefactors in the college’s history.

“It also stands as a testament to Allen Aaronson’s inspiring legacy as a generous donor and champion for Baruch,” Wu said about the center. “We are proud to see his vision for a space dedicated to student activities fulfilled in this historic Center bearing his name.”

The center currently operates from morning to afternoon on all weekdays. Students can use Navigate to book one of three 90-minute time slots, between which the center receives a deep-cleaning.