By Ari Ljubi
Music Therapy Major
Cleveland State University is always trying to make strides on new constructions and renovations for buildings on campus. Just in 2017, the university opened the newly-built Washkewicz College of Engineering building, and they are also currently renovating the science building by repainting and updating lab rooms. However, it seems as though buildings that are geared towards the arts are being neglected in these updates.
The Music and Communications building was opened in 1990, and it seems as though the building hasn’t had any updates since. The needs for major updates in this building are a must. Being a music therapy major, I spend a lot of time on the third and fourth floors in the building.
A couple of years ago, there were leaks coming into the practice rooms on the fourth floor. It turns out that there were old pipes leaking, causing foul odors and rust stains to appear on the walls.
The third floor has had issues with air conditioning fluctuating between extremely hot one day and extremely cold the next. The professors have to call somebody else in order to fix these problems, and the changes take days to get fixed. These issues are not only affecting the students, but for the music majors, these temperatures and water damages can affect our ability to perform and practice.
The pipe leak caused nauseating smells which led students and staff to completely avoid the fourth floor and cancel scheduled lessons. The pipe leak also damaged pianos that were in practice rooms, which caused the music department to spend money on new ones.
Temperature also plays a role in how instruments perform, including a singer’s voice. With the fluctuation of these room temperatures, the body can’t process how to cool down or warm up which can lead to students getting sick — and it has. A student’s health is supposedly important to the school, and I know how missing one day of class can affect your grade. We shouldn’t have to be concerned about not feeling well because of a building that isn’t up to date.
I have personally noticed how my body can’t decide what to do from the differing temperatures inside the building, and it has made me feel so overwhelmingly tired and unwell. Not to mention, I never know what to expect when I step inside the music building.
Every day, there is either paint peeling off the walls, a new leak, a new smell or something breaking. Students have reached out to the president about these concerns but have yet to hear anything back about it. They have tweeted him, emailed him and even invited him to come look at these concerns, yet gotten nothing in return.
How are we, the students, supposed to operate in a classroom when it feels as though it’s about to fall apart? And how are we supposed to feel heard on campus when our president won’t even respond to say he got our emails? If you ask me, it seems Cleveland State is too focused on making sure its engineering and science students are taken care of to even give the arts students the time of day.
We are all students that go to the same university, and at the end of the day, we just want to make sure that we are being taken care of just as equally as any other college on campus because we are the ones paying for it.