Coming Soon: Pedroso Center Expansion


Laura Rojas

The expansions to the Angelina Pedroso Center are near completion.

Laura Rojas, Writer

An addition to the Angelina Pedroso Center at NEIU will soon bring more space to students and faculty.

Still under construction, it is expected to be completed in November — progress was held back a few months since construction began in March due to poor weather conditions.

According to Diane DiMaso, an administrative assistant working for the Angelina Pedroso Center, the expansion will add six new offices to the Pedroso Center — though, since construction began, three of the original offices were demolished or repurposed. Essentially, three new offices will be available with the addition of a lounge space for students and staff.

DiMaso said the new lounge is primarily for the students who gather at the Pedroso Center to hang out or study.

“We’re not as quiet as the library — but we’re not as loud as the Student Union,” she said. “It draws students in because we want to give them an opportunity to experience different things.”

Among the structural changes to the Pedroso center, one of the original offices is going to be converted into two separate rooms reserved for student use.

One will be a gender-inclusive bathroom. The other is going to be a lactation room with full amenities such as a sink, counters, a comfortable chair and a refrigerator for storing any pumped milk.

There currently is a lactation room in the library, but, according to DiMaso, it is not as well furnished as this one will be and is not equipped with a refrigerator. And as for the gender-inclusive restroom — there is one other now in the Pedroso Center as well but it is only available when the center is open.

These two rooms will be available to students or staff whenever the school is open. DiMaso said, for security purposes, a swipe-card lock will be installed for the lactation room. Students and staff would be able to unlock the door with their ID’s after they have them registered at the campus police office.

The additional space brought by the renovations will allow the entirety of the Pedroso Center’s staff to work entirely from within the center itself. The offices of the women’s resource center and the LGBTQA resource center, currently housed in separate offices in the B-building, will be moving their offices to the Pedroso Center after the completion of its construction.

The expanded lounge area, DiMaso said, will afford the Pedroso Center staff more space for its programming. The lounge will have room to host more speakers, give more presentations and screen a greater number of movies.