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366. A Step Toward Better University Housing

-Interview with the Dean of Dormitory-

Jang, Min-young 기자2017.05.11 23:25:28

How many people are perfectly satisfied with University Housing? For years, complaints and questions have been raised continuously but there has been lack of proper dialog between the Office of University Housing and the residents. The KNU Times felt the need to stop this one-way notification and to arrange a venue for communication. The newly appointed Dean of Dormitory, Oh, Sang-yeob, responded to complaints and frequently asked questions in an attempt to make the University Housing a better place for the students.


1.    Q) How do you view the issue regarding the defective three-day-long cleaning operation of the entire Housings? What are the future plans?

The KNU University Housing has been open to students 365 days a year with no closure since it opened in 1984. We have never evacuated the housings completely for the sake of providing convenience for students. This is unusual compared to other universities where they require closures regularly. This prevented the office from processing a proper cleaning operation. The recent cleaning was the first attempt to evacuate the entire buildings but despite the effort but it is true many students were not satisfied. Through this trial and error, however, the office will improve the operation next year. We are planning to extend the cleaning period to a week for a more thorough cleaning next year.


2.    Q) Due to incompetent translation in English notifications, some international students have felt confused. How is the notification process for foreigners carried out?

The Office of Administration is in charge of making notices for foreigners. We ask for the cooperation of the Office of International Affairs and the KNU Language Institute in editing and finalizing English notices. However, they cannot review every single notification. We will look into the problem and make sure appropriate action is taken so that foreign students do not experience any confusion or inconveniences.


3.    Q) Cheomseong-Gwan has kindled many complaints such as the inconvenience of the package storage system or the poor quality of food at the cafeteria. Why is there no response to the complaints?

Cheomseong-Gwan is a BTL (Build-Transfer-Lease) dormitory which is owned completely by a private investor and over which our office does not have any control. The private investor holds every right to the building and thus it is not possible for our office to make modifications to the system. Otherwise, it may be considered as an inappropriate intervention in official business. There are worries regarding this problem with the construction of the second and third BTL housings being planned and there definitely should be improvements in the system.


4.    Q) Is there a plan for constructing new housings or remodeling the original buildings?

Currently, construction of the second BTL Housing with a capacity of 1,200 has almost been  confirmed and will be carried out as soon as the budget is passed. Additionally, we have demanded a budget for the construction of the third BTL building to replace old Housings such as Geungji and Hyubdong-Gwan. It seems there is a possibility of constructing a third BTL.  It will be either a renovation or a completely new construction, depending on the size of the budget passed by the National Assembly at the end of December, 2017.


5.    Q) What would you say about the constant complaints on the quality of the food provided at the cafeteria?

As mentioned above, the Cheomseong-Gwan cafeteria is solely managed by the private investor. The Financial Housings cafeteria, however, is a business operated by our office. We are putting our efforts into improving it but the cafeteria is currently at a loss. Thus, we encourage students to apply for a larger amount of meals. The relation between the quality of food and the students’ demand for the food are a matter of “which came first, the chicken or the egg?” The more demand for food there is, the more financial support we will have, and the more the support, the better the quality of the food will be.


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