Students Adjust to New Donald E. Young Center

It has been over a year since Black Hills State University opened its new athletic weight room for athletes and new fitness center for non-athlete students. The Donald E. Young Center has been around since 1989 and underwent renovations for the first time in 2014. The sports and fitness center was remodeled again within a year.

BHSU moved the athletic weight room to the first floor and the fitness room to the second floor. The rooms were always on opposite floors before the 2015 fall semester. The Jacket Zone, a student apparel store was also added on the first floor and has sold apparel during home games.

The rooms were relocated due to “structural and risk management concerns” according to BHSU administrative staff. Students also expressed their opinions and concerns. Jhett Albers, BHSU Athletics Director, said they made changes to alleviate those concerns.

The entire Young Center consists of an aquatic center, the fitness room, classrooms, a field house, gymnasium and Lyle Hare stadium. The fitness room and the athletic weight room were both renovated in 2015. The gymnasium had new wood floors installed in 2014, which was the first time the building had a major renovation since it was constructed in 1989.

The size of the old fitness center had larger dimensions and more space than the old athletic weight room. With the new weight room twice the size of the new fitness area, many athletes revealed they were happier to have a bigger weight room. Some students had opposition to the smaller size of the fitness center. However, students have adjusted to the new fitness center and talk about how it’s a better atmosphere. BHSU football player Darius Frimpong enjoys the changes.

“I always liked the weight room, but the new designs they put on has me even more excited and players think it has definitely contributed to the team’s success this season,” he said.

The athletes’ weight room had new decals and paintings done on the walls and pillars this year.

The university hired Brock Anundson as Assistant Athletic Director in July 2015 to help with the facility. Anundson oversees facility operations including the fitness center. It’s not clear if the Young Center will keep upgrading, but so far the facility has the campus generating a lot of buzz.