AC turned off on campus


Jenna Prather

Due to the renovation of Dunn Library and its utility systems, Simpson’s central chilled water plant will be offline until May 2.

by Jo Lamb, Staff Reporter

Due to the current renovation of Dunn Library, Simpson College’s central chilled water plant will be off until May 2, affecting most buildings on campus. 

An email sent to all of campus stated Amy Robertson Music Center, Blank Performing Arts Center, Smith Chapel, Wallace Hall, Mary Berry Hall, Barker Hall, Kresge Hall, Picken Hall, Buxton Hall, (most of) Cowles, Hillman Hall, Pfeiffer/Great Hall and the Carver Science Center will be the buildings without air conditioning.

Numerous students feel as if this is disrupting their ability to feel comfortable in their dorms. 

First-year Iqro Yussuf has experienced the reality of living in Barker with no AC.

“I really don’t like it because I’m taking the May Term as well so I’m going to be living in Barker still. I also have allergies, so that’s gonna make my allergies even worse,” Yussuf said. “I have asthma on top of that, so it’s going to be really bad for me.”

The AC outage is affecting not only students in their dorms but also in academic buildings.

“It’s annoying because it’s not even just our rooms, it’s also classrooms that are being affected,” said sophomore Emily Burns. “I just think it’s very insensitive that they didn’t even think about the impact it would have on students, which is the root of the problem. It doesn’t seem like they care.” 

Students have also expressed their concerns about their emotional support animals (ESAs) who are living on campus.

“I feel pretty awful because I live on the third floor, so the heat’s already rising,” Sophomore Jenna Ducett said. “Even with a fan, my room hits 80-90 degrees anyway. I have an ESA, and the fact that she has to sit in that is just horrible.”

Ducett purchased a cooling pad for her dog, and like other students, is considering buying a fan in order to keep their room cool. 

Students are not just frustrated by the administration, they feel as if they’ve been let down. 

Buxton resident Max Robinson voiced his concerns about the administration. “I wonder what they prioritize or if they really care about us as much as they say they do; if we’re really valued as much as they’re valuing themselves, the money, and the future of this school,” he said. 

When it came down to it, many students had differing opinions about the AC but all agreed that students should have been notified about the changes sooner. 

“We should’ve known. Why didn’t we know before they did it? Instead of just telling us, ‘Oh yep we did it and it’s done already.’ We should’ve known a little bit. And do they really think that’s a valid enough reason to shut it off and not accommodate us,” sophomore Michael Madeira said. “I understand that some colleges don’t have AC in their rooms and they can make that fight but they have central AC where the whole building is cool. We don’t even have that right now, it’s just hot.”

Brian Schultes, the head of campus services and maintenance, says he was informed ahead of the email that was sent to students, though was unable to comment as to why students were not informed earlier.

Dean of Students and Director of Residence Life Matt Hansen addressed the matter along with further steps to take.

 “We will continue to work with Campus Services to make sure we are maximizing ventilation in the residence halls, as well as identifying areas where fans might be brought in,” Hansen said. “Students with disabilities who are impacted by the lack of AC should work with Karen Lynch, Director of Accessibility Services, and Residence Life to identify the need for moving to temporary, alternative living arrangements.”