Rapid Charging Stations: Using Technology to Engage Students

Rapid Charging Station

The University of Montana is working to find creative ways to get students inside the Fitness and Recreation Center (FRC) and get them to stay there.  

Last month, they installed a rapid charging station inside the Fitness and Recreation Center. “It is part of our customer service initiative,” said Andi Armstrong, the assistant director of operations and marketing at the University of Montana. “It is also part of an effort to stay current in terms of technology.”  

According to Armstrong, the idea for the rapid charging station actually came from a member of the FRC. “A member of ours left a comment that he would like to see one in our fitness and recreation center,” she explained. “We thought it was a great idea so we worked to make that a reality.”  

When deciding what type of charging station to offer, Armstrong considered both price and location. The charging station at the FRC is the second one on campus — the other is located in the library.  

“I did a bunch a research online and asked people what kind of charging stations they use when traveling,” added Armstrong. “They have them in hotels and in airports. There are ones that are giant lockers, so you can rent a locker and put your phone in, but those are a little more expensive of course. We got a smaller one to try it out to see if people are going to use it.”  

Location was also a key consideration. Armstrong wanted to put the charging station in a place where it would get the most use. “The charging station is located in our lobby, just kitty-corner from our smoothie bar,” she said. “What I pictured was someone with a device that is running low, and they would be able to get lunch or a smoothie, hangout and feel part of the campus rec culture while charging their phone.”

Emily Harbourne is the editor for Campus Rec Magazine. She can be reached at emily@peakemedia.com.

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