by Olivia Kelley
When the ceiling in Miranda Stanfield’s shower in Johnson collapsed 10 minutes after she got out of the shower, she was frustrated.
She had filed five work orders with the Trevecca plant operations department and they had been to her room twice to look at or repair the leak in the ceiling.
In her frustration she posted photos and comments on her Facebook page.
The post got 31 comments and 66 “likes.” Over the next several weeks other students posted their frustrations with perceived needed repairs in their dorm rooms or bathrooms. They hash-tagged #experiencetrevecca, the hashtag used for Trevecca marketing.
Glen Lithicum, director of plant operations, said his staff went in to look at the problem in Stanfield’s room and did repair the leak about a week before the ceiling fell in. The repair didn’t stick, however, and the leak returned, causing the ceiling to collapse, he said.
“It’s just a simple repair, but in hindsight, when you look at it, there are over 1,500 toilets on campus and sometimes the repairs just don’t take,” said Lithicum.
Plant operations received approximately 1,366 work orders for the months of August and September alone. They are staffed with about 23 workers total–nine of those are maintenance workers.
“Every facility guy wishes he had more staff,” said Lithicum. “But, there hasn’t been much on this campus that we haven’t been able to fix. Sometimes we outsource for certain things just to save money.”
A common misconception among many students is that an RA needs to place the work order, however that has recently changed.
RA’s used to be the only ones allowed to place orders, but now it has been opened up to all students, said Ronda Lilienthal, associate dean of students for residential life,
“We try to prioritize the work orders that come in,” said Lithicum. “ If it’s a smaller issue then it might take a few days to get to, but we will get to it.”
Plant Operations receives, on average, about 5,000 work orders each year. This doesn’t include set-ups for chapel and on campus events or when students come to Lithicum without a work order.
“I’m not a hard guy to find,” he said. “If students see me around campus and ask me to come take a look at something without putting in a work order, I can usually come by and do that.”
However, students should always try to put in a work order when possible.
“There have been several cases where students don’t report it, because they think someone else will,” said Lilienthal. “If the issue isn’t being resolved after they’ve put in a report, then students can always come talk to one of us. We don’t want them to be in a situation where a problem isn’t being taken care of.”
Lithicum said plant operations isn’t always perfect, but they do the best they can and hopes that students will focus on solving the problem rather than resorting to posting on social media from now on.
“We almost always have to be perfect, because if we aren’t, then when we make a mistake, people want to look back on every mistake we’ve ever made,” he said.
How to put in a work order:
- Log into your tnu4u account
- Go to the menu on the left-hand side and click on services
- Click on campus services > schooldude request
- Fill out the information boxes for your work order and press submit