CSU maintenance cannot be swept under the rug

Shit is hitting the fan in the California State University system and SF State is no exception. From the complete closure of the Science Building, to much needed repair in the ancient and disgusting locker rooms, our school is in dire need of tender loving care — $203 million worth, to be exact.

Our campus is not the only one suffering. Fresno State University has faced severe power outages during the past years that led to classes being cancelled and there was even a four-day power outage in 2012 when its 60-year-old electrical system took a massive shock. In Southern California, Cal State Dominguez Hills in Carson is in need of more than $4.3 million in electrical and waterline upgrades.

The State of California needs to funnel massive amounts of funds into the hands of trusted university officials for renovations plaguing CSU campuses that have racked up a $1.8 billion backlog of infrastructure problems.

Even with increased funding proposed for the third consecutive year, and a plan to reduce deferred maintenance in the works by Gov. Jerry Brown within his recent budget, negligence of building issues by University officials has left students, faculty and staff in undesirable situations.

The deterioration of heating, ventilation and air conditioning systems are only few of the issues at hand at the 23 CSU campuses, at which nearly half of the buildings are more than 40 years old.

Just like cars need maintenance as mileage increases, buildings need upgrades as time passes. When upkeep is ignored, problems that could have been an easy fix escalate into an entirely new dilemma.

The Science Building is a prime example, but only a hyper-focused look at the future of many other CSU campuses.

If school officials did their job when it came to maintaining their own school facilities, we might not be in this predicament. Thousands of students and teachers wouldn’t be required to be squatters in their own school, having classes in makeshift rooms, tucked in a dirt lot back behind our one-and-only parking garage.

California legislators need to work with CSU officials to benefit the universities that are supposed to be enhancing the learning experience of the future leaders of California; not depriving them of buildings to sit in. After all, if college is going to lunge all of us into a lifetime of debt, we should at least be comfortable while we take the fall.