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BSUSA and Res. Life Kick Off Tunnel Painting Project

Kim Powell | Staff Writer | 02/02/2011

Student Association and Residential Life announced a new project at their meeting on January 26 that allows students to paint the walls of the BSU tunnel system.

“We’ve been working on this for a year now and we’re excited to get something happening,” said Michael Meehlhause, co-president of Student Association.

Last spring, former co-president Leo Clark brought up the idea of painting the tunnels, and worked with Dale Ladig, director of Residential Life, to get the project going. A $150 deposit was put in to get the project going by erecting a painting in the tunnel by the Gillette Recreation Center.

“You can’t help but look at the painting and read it when you walk by,” said Nicholas Nelson, Student Affairs co-chair.

Students can submit their sketches and requested location to Residential Life to be approved. After approval, a $20 deposit is required to cover paint and brushes. Students will receive their deposit back upon the return of the paint and brushes.

“Different organizations are allowed to have their paintings in the tunnels,” said Prativa Joshi, Student Affairs co-chair. “This gives them an opportunity to be recognized amongst the students.”

The tunnels that will play as the canvas are between Oak and Tamarack, and underneath Birch and Linden, according to Nelson. It is unsure if between Birch and Education Arts will be available to paint.

“It is encouraged that academic clubs advertise in paintings, but outside [off-campus] businesses will not be,” said Joe Moubry, webmaster and senator.

Residential Life controls this project; Student Senate is strictly the informative committee. The only restriction, according to Nelson, is there is no use of logos. Any Bemidji State school logo must be approved by the school.

“We [Student Affairs Committee] are trying to spread the word to all organizations on campus and encourage them to have their paintings in the tunnels,” said Joshi. “To do so, we are having one Student [Association] painting in the tunnels this semester.”

The Student Association sketch is awaiting approval as of January 26. Students are encouraged to start sending in sketches to get the project going.

“Painting the tunnels is a great idea because the tunnels look so plain and dark, it’s not very pleasant to walk by,” said Joshi. “It will help keep the tunnels lively, and will be more pleasant for the students which can create a positive environment.”

The tunnels, all the way from Oak to Bangsberg, are completely white or grey, except for the tunnel leading into the Education Arts building.

“It’s a really great opportunity for all students,” said Moubry, “whether you can paint stick figures or the next Mona Lisa.”