By Knox White
Promotions Team Member
Driving past Texas State University’s campus on I-35, one can immediately recognize the Albert B. Alkek Library with the building’s imposing size and modern design. Many Texas State Bobcats frequently visit the library for various resources such as the Student Learning Assistance Center (or SLAC), printer hub, the Witcliff Collection or to have a quiet place to study on its fifth and sixth floors. However, one of the more interesting floors at the Alkek Library would be on the first floor which is home to many special devices and spaces that all students can use to be creative.
Upon first entering Alkek One, students will be immediately greeted by ITAC or the IT Assistance Center. ITAC can not only help with problems unique to the university such as logging into online student services, but they can also help with personal devices such as repairing laptops or helping install software. They are also cheaper than using services like Geek Squad at Best Buy or sending your device to a manufacturer as you only need to pay for parts to fix your device which are usually at a discounted rate.
Straight past ITAC is the Bobcat IDEA Center. IDEA stands for innovation, discovery, exploration, and analysis and this is where undergraduate students can go if they wish to research a topic or attend the occasional workshop. The IDEA Center is a great resource for undergraduate students which allows them to develop relationships with faculty in their major while also developing critical thinking skills.
Immediately to the right of the IDEA Center’s entrance is the Immersion Studio which is home to virtual reality headsets and other various video game technology. Virtual reality headsets are not only for gaming as they can also showcase different places around the world to give students a small taste of what studying abroad may feel like.
Behind ITAC and the Immersion Studio are the five YouStar Studios. Three of these studios are for audio production; one contains a few microphones which would be ideal for podcasts or interviews, another contains a piano along with two microphones and the final room has three computers with various recording software, keyboards, MIDI controllers and a Fender Stratocaster electric guitar. On the other side of the hall, there are two YouStar studios dedicated to video with greenscreens, lots of lighting and cameras.
Alkek One is also home to a GeoSpace which is a computer lab with larger monitors and geographic software downloaded on all of the computers. TXST has a large Geography Department and some classes will be held in the GeoSpace. However, when a class is not in session, any Texas State student is free to use those computers in addition to the ones directly across from the ITAC desk.
Finally, Alkek One is home to a Maker Space. The Maker Space is home to 3D printers, sewing machines, embroidery machines, electronic workbenches, and different machines that can cut materials. This space is open to any Texas State student with the only requirements being that you take a short course to learn how to use the machines to ensure their longevity and that you pay for the materials you use.
Alkek One is a great place for students on campus to not only learn but also get in touch with their creative side. Countless students already use these spaces and form friendships and collaborations with their fellow Bobcats. Feel free to explore Alkek One’s website below to learn more about available opportunities.
Alkek One Web Page:
Written by: Danielle De Lucia