Focus more on students, less on creating buildings

By Postie Editors

In last week’s staff editorial, we said we were looking forward to the renovations of O’Dowd Hall. After further investigations, we stand corrected.

Recently, it seems as if Oakland University has made their mission to renovate various campus buildings and create new ones.

The new design of O’Dowd is supposed to be more efficient and cost effective in terms of an energy standpoint, but will cost the university $4.5 million.

Built in 1981, the building had a 25-year longevity, according to Terry Stollsteimer, associate vice president of facilities management.

Thirty-one years later, the building is ailing and has been for years. The windows have long leaked air and water and now the university is going to pour more money into recreating it’s glassy exterior.

Design-wise, the building also looks like any general building on campus — boring. Without the glassy exterior, it’s going to be foreign to those students who use it as a campus landmark.

It makes us wonder how many other buildings have these faulty issues on campus and why are we not correcting these problems from the beginning?

We’ve also noticed that the university is making a lot of pointless alterations.

Last year, the university decided to create a new entrance to the Oakland Center front and back, which not only took a lot of time and money, but also did not create any useful changes,  mostly ornamentation.

Though we do appreciate a prettier campus, we think the money would be better spent on other improvements:


Earlier this year, there was an unexpected overabundance of students wanting to live on campus. Because of the influx, 100 male students were moved into an off-campus hotel for the duration of the fall semester.

Instead of constructing a duplicate of a building we already have (cough Science and Engineering building) why not create additional student housing to allow more students to live on campus?

And with a university that seems so concerned with increasing the student experience, they should start at the beginning: parking.

The new Human Health building is being built in the corner of P1, the busiest parking lot on campus.

What’s going to happen when classes start in 2013 and there’s a sudden increase in student traffic?

It’s already busy enough there as it is. Why not use the money wasted on irrelevant building updates to create another parking garage in a better-suited area?

Hannah Hall

Though we know the university is currently working to restore some of the labs in the 51-year-old building, we think more attention needs to paid to smaller details.

There are many broken chairs in the building, old side tables that have been carved into, not to mention an accessibility issue, but we’ll get into that another time.

While the university is busy trying to engage students and create a more productive campus community, they should start focusing on students and less on the façade of the buildings.

Sure, the overall look of the campus may be beneficial when doing campus tours, but there’s a way to do it that both benefits the university and the students who go there.

The staff editorial is written weekly by members of The

Oakland Post’s editorial board: Nichole Seguin, Megan Semeraz and Kevin Romanchik.