The Director’s Welcome – Winter 2020

One of the greatest lessons the University of Washington tries to instill is that of resiliency.  These unprecedented times are certainly testing all of our resiliencies with each day bringing new information, new challenges, and new real impacts on our personal lives and those around us.  As they always have, and will continue to do, ASUW and GPSS continue to rise to the occasion and provide leadership in this uncertain time. 

Even without the impact of recent global events, the winter quarter at UW is often the most challenging time for our students and staff, with the sustained overcast weather and the true mid-way point for the full academic year taking its toll on motivations.  To overcome these feelings myself, I take the time to pause and reflect on the many success stories all around here in the HUB. This has really been an outstanding year with so many positive moments, including the most successful HUB Crawl (Dawg Daze Fall Welcome Week event) ever, the new Esports Arena and Gaming Lounge consistently packed for tournaments and workshops, and record-breaking guests across every area and service in the HUB.  You can read all about the HUB’s successes from 2018 – 2019 in our Impact Report.  In the Fall, thanks to so many alumni who have donated to our endowment, we awarded the first ever HUB Excellence in Student Leadership Scholarship to two outstanding students: Giuliana Conti (GPSS President) and Spencer Lively (ASUW Director of Legislative Affairs).  One final item that brings me joy, is that we recently hung up two stunning pieces of art from Kyler Pahang, who won last year’s HUB Director’s Art Award with depictions representing his native Filipino culture.  

Unfortunately, this December also marked the end of an era as Paul Zuchowski graduated (OK, fine, I’ll admit it…he retired) after 35 of years of selfless service to the HUB, to the staff, and to the students.  Paul has been synonymous with the HUB, there is absolutely nothing about this building, nor our programs, that he was not connected to. With only one exception, he was a part of hiring every single staff member currently working for the HUB, including both Lincoln and Rene.  Since he has left, we all have felt the sting of reality regarding what he did to keep the doors open and the lights on (literally, because sometimes the lights just don’t turn on now, I think he planted a bug for us). I have been so grateful for his advice these past four years, and Paul will forever be one of my first positive thoughts when it comes to the top people who made lasting impacts on what the HUB offers the UW community…exactly what we all strive to achieve.

In the months ahead, our charge as a student union does not end simply because classes are online. This is where we show what student unions and student government have always shown throughout our history…we evolve and rise to the occasion.

Justin Camputaro, PhD
HUB Director