Letter to the Editor: Regarding “Housing loses director and maintenance concerns raised” article

In response to “Housing loses director and maintenance concerns are raised” article here.
Read Editorial here.

Dear Residential Students,

I am writing in response to the Signal article from October 28, 2014 entitled: Housing missing/loses director and maintenance concerns are raised. As Director of University Housing I would like to assure our residential students that facilities quality and service is a top priority for me and the staff that work in University Housing. While the position of associate director for facilities operations is currently vacant, there is staff in place to manage the areas of responsibility that were currently held by Larry Uphoff, and no area of facilities maintenance or planning is being neglected. As mentioned in the previous article (and the Editorial), we do have a lean maintenance staff of 11 full-time employees, but we also have a staff of 19 full-time custodial employees who are responsible for cleaning of our residence halls. Both staffs do a fantastic job of addressing student concerns and managing the upkeep of our facilities. Year after year, facilities is one of the areas of service that our residents have consistently rated highly on our EBI student satisfaction survey. At the same time, we know that a small number of students do experience longer than usual waiting times on certain repairs. In these instances, we often are awaiting parts in order to complete the work, or it may be a case in which the staff have to address larger maintenance issues first. Whatever the circumstance, we take each and every work order and facilities concern reported seriously, and want our residents to continue to inform us using our work order system. We also conduct regular inspections of our facilities and immediately develop plans to address concerns, such as washing machines and dryers that malfunction from time to time due to their constant and regular use. However, if residents feel that an issue has gone unnoticed or is taking an unreasonable amount of time to be addressed, we welcome a call to our Housing Office at (404) 413-1800 so that we can assess the situation and provide an expected timeframe for repair or replacement. We also encourage residents to get involved in their building’s student hall council or contact the Residence Hall Association, with whom we regularly work, to provide suggestions or ideas for improvements and upgrades to our residence halls.

Dr. Marilyn De LaRoche, Director of University Housing