TV not a valid investment

The Student Center is about to have a new addition – a big-screen, high-definition television for the Student Center Lounge. Its cost: $5,700, approximately a quarter of a tuition scholarship.Wednesday’s Skiff reported that the Permanent Improvements Committee is purchasing the TV; the House of Student Representatives voted to give the committee the funds, with a 20-16 vote. It believes that the TV will benefit students.

Sure, having a large, quality TV in the Student Center Lounge will make it easier to, well, lounge. But the TV in the Student Center Lounge is just not used enough to justify the cost.

The TV is rarely the kind of gathering place that can be said to better student life. In fact, in some cases the TV is distracting and annoying. Though the TV will be located further from the supposedly quiet reading room, it will likely remain a nuisance to those who wish to study or socialize without having to tune out an obnoxious TV.

Furthermore, most students on campus already have televisions in their dorm rooms; dorms also have lounge rooms that contain televisions and allow people to gather. Students don’t really need another on-campus television. If TCU wants to improve student viewing experiences, the money would be better spent on newer, though perhaps not as expensive, televisions in dorm lounges.

Finally, a new HDTV is not rightly a permanent improvement. With television technology changing rapidly, who knows how soon the TV will be outmoded. Will TCU spend another $5,000 to buy a new TV in just five more years? Aren’t there other ways we can use this money to the benefit of students on-campus?

Ultimately, the Student Center Lounge situation suits TCU well for now. When the new student center is built, these things might change. But in the meantime, let’s put this money toward an actual improvement, not just a perceived one.

Opinion editor Stephanie Weaver for the editorial board