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Explore the community culture of the UMaine Commuter Lounge

An older sitcom invites viewers to a place “where everybody knows your name” and they’re always glad you came. Seriously isn’t that something we all need in these contentious times — spaces where we feel welcome, affirmed, valued, and safe? If you’re a commuter or future commuter, the Commuter Lounge can be one of those spaces for you.

First of all, let’s tackle definitions. A commuter is anyone who doesn’t live in a dorm. You don’t have to schlep in from Millinocket to be considered a commuter. If you cross the street from The Reserve or Talmar Wood, you commute. Future commuters are dorm students who are eager to take the next step toward independence — the first apartment.

So what do we have to offer?

We’re a good place to eat, study or chill. We’re in easy walking distance from the Bear’s Den, but without the claustrophobic quality of their seating. For people who pack their own food, we have a kitchenette with a refrigerator, microwaves and a toaster. We offer free coffee on Mondays through Fridays. We also have a decent ambiance for studying or working on group projects. We’re what Fogler Library could be if you could eat and drink there. Some small groups get together to pursue interests such as multiplayer games.

We commuters just wanna have fun, sometimes. That’s what our special events are for. Our most well known event is First Fridays bagels and coffee. Recently we’ve enjoyed smoothies and popcorn, planted darling little succulents and painted miniature masterpieces. Moving forward we’re working on fun events like another painting opportunity, a movie excursion, a smash tournament and a clothes swap. Of course we’ll serve up plenty of food treats. And we want to hear from students about what they want to see.

We’re all about information. In April, people from the Career Center will stop by with summer job information. We’re also working on a Let The Renter Beware event to help people know what to watch out for in signing that first lease.

There’s never been a better time to check out the Commuter Lounge. Coming back from the total shutdown of the pandemic, we’re open to suggestions for renovations, events, and other offerings. You can speak to someone or write on our suggestions board. You can help us shape the future. Please drop by, look around and tell us what you want to see.

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