Maintenance for the Maintenance

Anthony Harris
Opinions Editor

anthonydeanharris@gmail.com

As I write this article in my cold room in Mays, I think about the crack between my box air conditioning unit and the window letting the cold air blow on my back. This would have been alleviated somewhat if I had blinds on my window. I haven’t had blinds on my window all year. I can tell a resident assistant before checkout to fix that, but I knew nothing would come of it. Nothing came of telling him I didn’t have a mirror, either. My desk drawer has been broken all year as well.

All this past week, Brawley Hall has been freezing cold. The computer lab has been quite unbearable. One of the English department’s most esteemed professors even cancelled a class because she felt her students should not be subjected to such conditions, and might I say, canceling class is something unprecedented for her. But these conditions have been all over the building. Classrooms and offices alike have been ridiculously cold all week and not even an email has hinted at repair.

For some reason that only God in heaven knows, I’m taking business law this semester (yes, I know eight different ways to prepare crow, although, I don’t have the book for it and need some help obtaining it). Every Tuesday and Thursday, I take the trek to the cookie cutter building to immerse myself in… something or other, but much of what I get is a humming noise that irritates every single person in the room, the professor included.

Over the years, I have complained a great deal about Morehouse’s inefficiencies, but the most egregious of faults in this place is with the Physical Plant. I’ve been admonished by the likes of Ernest Williams through my famed (albeit tiresome) grass campaign. Residential staffs have been bumped in priority time after time for maintenance issues. When Atlanta saw the coldest night it has had in years and Spelman evacuated to a YWCA, Morehouse’s response was to give everyone space heaters.

Sure, I could find a whole cadre of problems about (the absolute lack of cranberry juice in the cafeteria, the allotment of resources to the business department, the steam piping through every orifice in the street that makes the campus smell like a giant toilet), but while some of these could be fixed quickly or isn’t even the school’s fault, I think every one of us can make a long list of maintenance issues the Physical Plant has yet to resolve.

I say this knowing very well how a maintenance staff should work. Clark Atlanta’s maintenance staff accomplishes more by and large through a dedicated staff and less bureaucracy through the constant revamping of management. If only those who ensure things run smoothly at our fellow AUC schools would tell us how to fix broken windows and cool boilers in January.

Frankly, I’m getting tired of malfunctioning heat or people coming to my building to use the shower (or cold showers in general). I don’t like reading about power outages. I don’t care to read the abundance of emails in my Morehouse inbox about what building isn’t getting heat or air conditioning this month. For a maintenance staff, I’m not so sure how effective they are at maintaining anything.

This is a serious call for the Physical Plant to step up their game. If I’m being harsh, I say it only to say we’re all on pins and needles (partially from hypothermia) to see what sweeping improvements the campus will see. If Morehouse is supposed to undergo this Franklinian Renaissance, we’re seriously going to have to work on these Roman aqueducts.

At least get me a mirror in my room, and blinds, and sealant between the air conditioner and the window, and heat in Brawley, and I’m sure there are other suggestions.

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