Growing pains, concerns rattle Shineman

(Devon Nitz | The Oswegonian)
(Devon Nitz | The Oswegonian)

Over the course of the last few months, the Shineman Center has transformed from an object of admiration to a building in which we need to get work done. In this process, there are bound to be growing pains, and Shineman has proven to have its fair share thus far.

The problem that got my attention was the unbearable periodic roars and whistles of the ventilation system in some classrooms. Not only are these sounds incredibly distracting, but they can also make the teacher impossible to hear. Most likely, others have found different problems.

My first reaction was that the ventilation issue is a shame. At the same time, it struck me as being ungrateful to complain. The Shineman Center was an incredibly generous gift to Oswego State, and we should be thankful for it, warts and all.

Others seemed to share a similar reaction. My calculus professor went so far as to complain to the class that he should not have to teach in a room that sounds like a factory, and apologized for the difficulty. Later, he begrudgingly contented with himself spending, hours speaking at a volume on the verge of shouting.

I found this too bothersome to keep from making a formal complaint. When I finally reported the problem to Facilities Maintenance and Operations, they did not, to my surprise, politely tell me to suck it up and get used to it. It turns out that the contractors who built Shineman included a one-year warranty in their deal with Oswego State that will allow the school to fix these problems.

“This is kind of like a bumper to bumper warranty on an automobile,” said Allen Bradberry, construction coordinator at Oswego State. “As items are discovered or identified, they are brought to the attention of the contractor and addressed accordingly. But they do need to be brought to the attention of Facilities Services so that we are aware of them.”

This gave me the thought that we should keep this “bumper to bumper warranty” in mind as we settle into our new place. A few days ago, I noticed the ventilations systems in my classrooms were quiet, and my calculus professor was happy to not have to yell. It’s unfortunate that it took this long for the problem to be reported. The resources to fix these problems are available. We just need to remind ourselves of this when we hesitate to report them.

We should aim to be constructive in this next year. Let’s pay attention to the noises, odors, cracks and snags of the building, and report any problems to Facilities Maintenance and Operations. We’ll use this beautiful space for a long time, but only this year can we get it fixed for free.

To request maintenance anywhere on campus, go to iservicedesk.oswego.edu, or contact Facilities Maintenance and Operations at fmo@oswego.edu.