Letters to Editor, Opinion

LETTER: Residential labs threatened

There are so many useless expenses incurred by Boston University, and it has come to my attention that President Robert Brown will soon decide to cut down on one of them.’ The decision is being made to shut down the residential computer labs that are used on a daily basis by a significant portion of the student body. To take away from the student body an important resource for computing access and assistance, and for quiet study areas; an obviously useless expense that no university should carry, right?

I guess the powers that be figured everyone on campus could already manage all the applications that our various programs of study require us to use throughout our stay at BU. Thus, I suppose they figure the students will never need any further assistance in these programs’ use. A poll must also have already been conducted and found that on top of the yearly tradition of tuition increases, the student body is ready to shell out additional hundreds of dollars to purchase Photoshop, Dreamweaver, Illustrator, Fireworks, Flash, SAS, SPSS, X-Win32 and other programs available for students at the labs.

The decision has not yet been made, or at least that’s what I’m told. But I do know that the labs are not currently accepting any applications, regardless of how many of us consultants will soon graduate. Should the labs close, Myles Standish Hall, The Towers, Warren Towers, South Campus, Rich Hall and the Student Village will reopen for residents in September 2009 lacking any computing facilities. What more can you expect from a world-class university? From an institution like the one Brown said he would turn us into from his first day in office?

But fear not, everyone! You will still be able to print and use the computer stations in Mugar Memorial Library, where we all know there are always enough stations available for everyone. Just make sure to account for the extra time added to the queue from the additional volume that closing other labs will bring; that queue never got that long anyway, right?

I understand that economic times are tough. But in the rush to cut everything it can from the budget, the administration must take a step back and realize that we are first and foremost a university. Access to computers is more important to our education everyday – I can’t believe I actually have to make such a statement in 2009. Cuts must be made, yes, but labs are not places where cuts are acceptable. These labs are an invaluable asset and resource for the student body.

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Hugo Ju’aacute;rez Michel

CAS ’09

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