The Odor of Neglect
Published: Tuesday, September 24, 2013
Updated: Tuesday, September 24, 2013 01:09
Although the university has emphasized on-campus housing of late, neglected mold problems in many dormitories stand only to dampen the mood of residential life on the Hilltop.
While Housing and Facilities often responds promptly to extreme mold issues, minor situations are left for students to handle. Students dealing with minor mold issues, which arise from collections of moisture and poor ventilation, are told to refer to online instructions from the Center for Disease Control and Prevention. Some have said that clearing mold themselves has caused allergic reactions, including hives. The reporting process for students can prove difficult; maintenance workers have reportedly simply painted over the mold in some instances instead of fully removing it.
Residences are cleaned after summer program participants leave, though the result is not always spotless. This fall, half a dozen instances were reportedly so serious when students moved in that they had to be relocated for as long as a week until the problem could be resolved. This inconvenience is unfortunate, particularly at that time of year, but problems carrying on through September are more concerning. The university must do a better job surveying cleanliness in August so that students can depend on a clean residence upon arriving on the Hilltop.
Students are paying for maintenance services, and the convenience and competence of those services reflects directly on the university. It seems that the administration has been, at least for many mold-affected residents, neglectful landlords. If the university wants its on-campus housing to be attractive and safe for students, this must be addressed.