It is Saturday afternoon, and like clockwork, my hall bathroom is out of toilet paper, paper towels and room in the trashcans — an inevitable problem when you have more than 20 girls sharing a living space and housekeeping that doesn’t come in on the weekends. Now usually my disposition would lead me to live on in acceptance of the situation, to “tough it out” every weekend. However, I am usually not paying large sums of money to dwell in a supposedly well-maintained residence hall. There are expectations that come with housing fees, and having toilet paper on the weekends is certainly one of them.
This leads me to another unmet expectation: air conditioning. It wasn’t until college began when I realized that air-conditioned dorms for freshmen are as rare a commodity as bananas in Sadler. What is to blame for this? What are the brave souls who ask told about it? Building incompatibility with the air conditioning systems? It certainly can’t be lack of funds when somewhere a rarely-full stadium is getting extra seating. Whatever the reason for both unmet expectations, change is needed. Housing improvements for freshmen need to become a priority. My fellow classmates will not stand, nor pay, for housing hazing. We will no longer blindly accept housing inequality based simply on our status at the college. Is this all too much to ask for?
There are expectations that come with housing fees, and having toilet paper on the weekends is certainly one of them.
Quite frankly, these issues should not exist, as they have simple solutions. One easy fix would be to leave the hall storage rooms fully stocked and available to the residents of each hall, or perhaps just the resident assistant. This way we can solve our limited resource problem without the extra expenses and troubles that come with an additional workday for our housekeeping staff. This is a small solution for a big problem, one that should be respected by those receiving thousands of dollars in housing payments from a hall without toilet paper. The solution for lack of air conditioning? Installing room units for all halls. Yes, it will be an expense. However, I think the College can afford it, what with my own out-of-state tuition costs raking in around $52,000 a year.
A system as large as college management will inevitably have its flaws and blind spots. There are small issues management teams cannot foresee, or large ones that administrators choose to ignore. It is up to the student body to pay attention, challenge and better the way our beloved college runs. We can be the catalysts of change for this school, and we should be. The moral of the story? Keep a skeptical eye out, kids. No one gets better from being told that they’re already great.
Email Jenny Cosgrove at firstname.lastname@example.org