10 things to know about life on campus this fall

Story by Cooper Nelson
Photos by Darryl Webb
GCU News Bureau

A lot changed at Grand Canyon University's main campus this summer. As a new or returning student or employee,  it’s easy to get a little lost.

But GCU Today has you covered with the top 10 things to know about what's happening on campus this fall:

1. More parking 

The GCU community has plenty of space to park on campus this year. In addition to a parking garage at the main campus entrance at 33rd Avenue and Camelback Road, a new parking garage, at 35th and Missouri avenues, was completed, adding 1,380 parking spaces.

Parking also is available near all residence halls, in additional lots north of the soccer field and on the northeast corner of campus off Colter Street.

2. Where to eat

Students and staff also have a range of options for campus dining. Mojo Bowl and Qdoba will join existing campus retail eateries Chick-fil-A, Subway, Mein Bowl (Asian cuisine), Zoyo frozen yogurt and the Student Union cafeteria to form a food court atmosphere between the Union and Thunder Alley.

Peet's Coffee & Tea opened on Monday, Aug. 25, in two campus locations — the second floor of the Union and in the first-floor concession area of GCU Arena. The Union location is expected to be full service on Monday, Sept. 8.

Qdoba is scheduled to open on Friday, Aug. 29, while Mojo Bowl is slated to open on Tuesday, Sept. 2, with healthy smoothies and acai berry bowls. Both will be located on the west side of the Union.

Student meal plans work at all locations.

3. New dorms

GCU added three new residence halls this summer, bringing the total to 11 on campus.

Papago Apartments I and II are on the east side of campus by Camelback Hall and feature 940 beds in private two- and four-bedroom layouts. Papago II eventually will include a fitness center, swimming pool and courtyard, while a satellite office for Residence Life and a fitness center will be located in Papago I.

Ocotillo Hall, a mostly freshman dorm resembling Saguaro, is on the northeast corner of campus and includes 653 beds.

Mesquite Apartments near the Colter parking lot features 318 beds in two-bedroom townhouses and apartments with full kitchens.

4. Stay cool in the pool

If you’re an out-of-state student, you may have noticed that Phoenix is hot. Really hot. Well, that’s not changing anytime soon. The mercury won’t dip below 90 degrees until October, but don’t worry, we’ve got you covered. GCU has two pools on campus: one next to the Promenade south of the Student Union and another outside Chaparral Hall on the east side of campus. A third pool at Papago II is scheduled to open on Monday, Sept. 29.

5. Health, fitness and public safety

Three places all campus students should know about are the Health and Wellness Center, campus fitness centers and public safety office.

The Health Center is located on the first floor of Camelback Hall and is open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Thursday, and 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Friday. The center is closed on weekends.

Employees and students have access to two fitness centers: one on the first floor of Chaparral Hall and a second in the 27th Avenue Office Building. Two additional fitness centers will open at Papago I and II in October, and a third fitness venue is planned for next year. The Rec Center just west of Thunder Alley eventually will be closed to students except for boot camps and pickup and intramural basketball.

Students may contact public safety officers at any time by calling 602-639-8100. Blue light emergency call boxes are located across campus and also may be used to contact campus police in emergencies.

6.  Mail center, tutoring and student library

Three more places students should know about:

GCU’s mail center is on the north side of Building 9 next to the campus bookstore but is moving to a new space on the first floor of Papago II late next month. Incoming mail can be found at mailboxes near each residence hall, while outgoing mail and packages can be sent from the mail center. Hours of operation are 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday.

Tutoring services in all subjects are available to students at the Center for Learning and Advancement (CLA) on the south side of the College of Business. CLA hours are 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. Monday through Thursday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Friday and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday. Click here to sign up for tutoring.

Hours for the student library, on the top two floors of the Student Union, are 7 a.m to midnight Monday through Thursday, 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. Friday, 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. Saturday and 10 a.m. to midnight Sunday. Ask-a-Librarian hours (Arizona time) are 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. Monday through Friday and 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. Click here for more details.

7. Watch a play 

Looking for something to do on campus this year? Why not watch a play at Ethington Theatre?

Ethington opens its 2014 theatre series on Friday, Aug. 29, with “Sherlock Holmes: The Final Adventure.” Performances are Friday and Saturday at 7:30 p.m. and Sunday at 2 p.m. The full Ethington Theatre series can be found here. Or …

8. Catch a game

… Or catch a Lopes basketball game at GCU Arena.

The men’s basketball team is following a successful first season in the Division I Western Athletic Conference and will play a number of teams with NCAA Tournament experience at home this year, including New Mexico (Dec. 23) and Harvard (Dec. 30). The Lopes play a home exhibition game against Western New Mexico on Nov. 6, and their official home opener is scheduled for Nov. 17 versus Montana State.

Season tickets can be purchased on the Arena website or at the facility's box office.

9. Chapel, theGathering and GO Week

Chapel services will be held most Mondays at 11:15 a.m. in GCU Arena and will follow a “Make a Difference” theme. Speakers include local and national pastors and Christian speakers plus GCU staffers. theGathering, GCU's student-oriented worship service, is scheduled for Tuesday nights at 8 in Antelope Gym. GCU’s Global Outreach (GO) Week is scheduled for Sept. 15-19, when students will have opportunities to learn more about mission trips.

For information about GO Week, email [email protected].

10. Coming soon

With another 4,000 students planned to join campus next year for a grand total of nearly 15,000, GCU isn’t done growing. In September, the University plans to break ground on four new student residence halls on the northwest corner of campus near the new parking garage. Two intramural fields are planned next to the new halls.

Construction on a four-story engineering classroom building will begin this fall east of Ethington Theatre. It will house a new music studio on the top floor for the Center for Worship Arts.

Contact Cooper Nelson at 602-639-7511 or [email protected].


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