5 Things Every College Campus Should Have
I recently came across an article announcing that the Georgia Institute of Technology (Atlanta) will be opening a Walmart on campus soon, marking the second time the company has put down roots on a college campus. They opened their first store at the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville in 2011. Although the stores are tiny (2,500 square feet), they do offer a variety of essentials that most college students would love to have within walking distance of their dorm rooms, including a pharmacy, check cashing and bill paying services. I know I would have loved to have one on my college campus, as it would have saved me the hassle of having to find a parking space every time I needed to leave campus to pick up a few items for my room. The article got me thinking about other companies and services that I think every college student would probably love to see pop up on their campuses, too. I know it’s probably wishful thinking, but here are a few things I would have definitely frequented if they were on my college campus.
1. Massage Envy
After I graduated, a friend turned me on to our local Massage Envy and I have been hooked ever since. Membership is $59.00 a month for a one-hour massage, but additional massages are only $39.00 each. If the company would offer just the $39.00 massages, without the membership requirement, I could definitely see them doing a booming business on college campuses. Massage is great for reducing stress and helping to relieve pain from exercising or sports. It would also be a great place for anyone needing an internship for their certificate program. If we had one on my campus, I would have been in there every day during finals!
2. Weight Loss Center
Whether it is Weight Watchers, a mini Biggest Loser program or some other weight loss program, it would have been nice to have something on campus that could have helped me stave off the ‘Freshman 15.’ It’s definitely a challenge trying to eat right and exercise regularly while in college, but if a weight loss company could come in and tailor a plan to my college’s meal plan and utilize the campus fitness options, I would have signed up in a heartbeat, if the price was right. Besides, weight loss always works better with a support system, and where else are you going to find more people struggling with the same issues? It’s a no-brainer.
I cannot tell you how many times I wished there was a salon on my campus. Between my classes, I could have stopped by for a quick haircut, manicure or pedicure. It sure would have been better than catching a quick nap in the library! Even the guys would have enjoyed having the ability to get in a quick haircut before heading out on a date or going to a job interview. Just like the Massage Envy idea, the salon could also offer internships for cosmetology students.
4. Rental Stations
Drexel University offers free MacBook rentals through kiosks in their library. How cool is that? This should be on every college campus, but why stop there? My college was surrounded by a nature preserve and had a fabulous mall about two miles from the dorms. I would have loved the opportunity to rent a bike or scooter for the day, or even a skateboard or roller blades. It would have made the weekends more enjoyable and helped me to stay in shape. For those students near the water, why not rent a kayak, surfboard or snorkeling equipment? Even for a small fee, I would have taken advantage of these services.
5. Weekend Farmer’s Market
Sometimes, a college campus can feel like its own little world, even when surrounded by a sprawling city or urban area. A great way to introduce the students to what’s available locally is to invite the public in on weekends to offer their goods and services. I would have relished the chance to purchase fresh fruits, breads and other treats right on my campus. It would not only provide businesses with the opportunity to reach new customers, but also give students something to look forward to when the rest of the campus is typically shut down.
I know that these are trivial things to wish for and that colleges have other pressing needs, but a girl can dream, right? If your college offers some unusual services or businesses on campus, be sure to share it with me, I’d love to know who has the most awesome campus in America and why. Who knows, maybe some college administrator will stumble across this post and actually put some of these suggestions into place, or maybe an enterprising student will start his/her own campus business. Either way, just be sure to send me my royalty check for giving you the idea!