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The Student News Site of Stony Brook University

The Statesman

The Student News Site of Stony Brook University

The Statesman

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    60 Minutes with the Head of Camp Res

    GSEU DMB in severe disarray

    Since two of histop administrators have left the Division of Campus Residences, Dallas BaumanIII, Ph.D., has spent many long hours steering the machinery for thedepartment, which is one of the largest at Stony Brook University.

    Yet, Baumanfound time to sit with the Statesman to provide some insight into the workingsof his office and to address student housing concerns.’ He candidlydiscussed how he thought his department stacked up against others and sharedhis vision for the future of Campus Residences.

    With thedeparture of Jerry Stein for the Dean of Students Office and the new Directorof Residential Operations, Ken Fehling, still two weeks away from starting,Bauman has spent this semester performing myriad tasks.’ From meeting withthe Provost to plan for the next round of Undergraduate College openings topurchasing the shrubbery to plant behind James College, Bauman is fulfilling anever-expanding job description.’

    A focus of hisrecent meetings with Provost Robert McGrath has revolved around what is tobecome of the former dinning center in Tabler Quad.’ According to severalindividuals in administration, it may become a center for arts, culture andhumanities.’ Plans range from having satellite offices for campus media toa small stage for theatrical productions.’ Bauman declined to speculatefurther, but said that progress was being made.

    ‘We’reproceeding [on course and] on schedule, though there are still some significantissues that have to be addressed,’ he said.

    Handling theday-to-day tasks that come with housing over 7,000 students also finds a way ofgetting penciled into his schedule. Bauman said that he does much of the staffsupervision himself.

    But with thesecond round of residence hall renovations underway, Bauman hopes that Fehling,whose responsibilities will include managing the buildings, will be ready toassume some of the tasks Bauman has been juggling.’

    ‘[Fehling]won’t start for another two weeks. That will be some help, but I was hoping tohave had someone here much sooner,’ Bauman said.’ ‘He worked at

    the [facilitiesoffice in] Queens Community College for 12 years and before that he was atStony Brook for 16 years.’ I’m confident that he’s going to hit the

    groundrunning.’

    The second roundof renovations began in Hendrix College over the past summer and unavoidablyspilled over into the beginning of this semester.’ In the summer of 2003,Gershwin and Mount, which combined house approximately 400 beds, are expectedto each get a $700,000 facelift.’ This sum pales next to the $2 millionthat was spent for roughly every 200 beds during the originalrenovations.’

    Bauman was quiteproud of the fact that Stony Brook renovates its residence halls morefrequently than many other institutions.’ He explained the reason for

    the low cost ofthe Gershwin and Mount projects.’

    ‘There isnot that much that is left to do,’ he said. ‘We did major work inthe mechanical sector during the first renovations.’

    Once he assumeshis position, Fehling will also oversee the custodial and maintenance staffs,the lock shop, the grounds and any new construction projects pertaining to theDivision.

    Coming into anoffice that has been vacant for some time, Fehling will be faced with guidingbroad policies, as well as making many small decisions that directly impactstudents.’

    Severalresidents have reported to Statesman that in their residence halls bathroom ceilings arecrumbling and showers are so moldy that they may pose a health concern.’ They expressed their frustration over failed petitions to hall directorsregarding these maintenance and custodial issues.’ There was also concernexpressed by students that the previous renovations of the residence halls, suchas those in H quad, were just topical.’

    ‘Those lastrenovations were simply slapping a fresh coat of paint on the walls andreplacing the doors,’ said an H-Quad resident who asked to not beidentified. ‘There is a lot of plumbing that has rotted and the hallssmell like sewage.’ The plumbing needs to be replaced.’

    However, Baumaninsisted that the problems are not a major issue. ‘The pipes have aminimal expected lifespan of 50 years.’ And it would not be appropriate tocharacterize the first round of renovations as surface [in nature].’

    He did admit tohaving some troublesome roof leak issues, which may eventually damagewalls.’ ‘We’re gettin
    g a roofing consultant because we’ve done a lotover the summer and there still are minor problems.’

    In addition toaddressing maintenance issues and the need for more beds, Bauman said theDivision is focused on improving the residential experience at Stony Brook.

    Residents areprovided with residential computing centers, fitness centers and residentialtutoring services free of charge and located in most quads.’

    ChampioningPresident Kenny’s State of the University challenge to do even more forstudents with existing resources, Bauman, Gina Vanacore and Stacy Miller saidthat they seek to improve the quality of life for residents. Vanacore is theDirector for Residential Programming for the Residence Hall and Miller is theDirector of Apartments.

    Together theyencouraged resident assistants to improve the first year experience forstudents by organizing six weekly activities during the beginning of thesemester.’ Dividends from their efforts to get residents involved areshowing, they asserted, as approximately 840 residents participated in PridePatrol, translating into a significant increase from the year before.’

    ‘From myperspective activities at the start of the semester have been better thanthey’ve ever been,’ said Bauman.’ ‘I think that this interimgroup [which is co-chaired by a resident assistant] has done a great job.’ There has never been as much of a turnout at the beginning of the yearactivities.’

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