3/16/09 Ask Charlotte Answers

Question: Before the Spring semester started I tried to add two classes and drop one. My advisor was in Spain, so I had to wait until the first day of classes to make these changes. My advisor informed me that we could have made these changes via WebAdvisor; however, I do not know how to add or drop a class this way. Could you please either tell me the steps to add or drop a class or point me in the way of finding out?

Answer: Yes, WebAdvisor is a very useful tool to communicate with your advisor and arrange for course changes! You may look online for instructions on how to use WebAdvisor.

If, however, you prefer hands-on instruction, there are students at the Learning Loft (5th Floor of Yager) on Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday evenings from 5-9 who can help you explore and understand WebAdvisor. Good luck!

Question: Dear Charlotte, the OPT link you posted within your answer to my question a while back does not work!

Answer: I, too, have noticed over the past few months that the ‘OPT Page is currently being updated.’ If you have questions about schedules, etc. you may call 432-7100 from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Hopefully the Web site will be available as a resource again soon!

Question: Why is there no longer any hot water in Bresee Hall restrooms since the renovations have been done? You used to be able to wash your hands with warm water, but now nothing but cold water comes from the hot tap...and it's freezing! I asked some of the Facilities people about it, and they told me that if you let the water run for a while it warms up, but it usually takes 15 minutes or so! If we're trying to be a "green" campus and conserve water, why should we have to wait 15 minutes for warm water to wash our hands? Can this be fixed?

Answer: My understanding is that this was worked on and fixed last month. If there are further problems, I would suggest that you submit a work order request regarding it--which may be accessed, completed, and submitted online.

Question: Can you please get someone to fix the water fountain that is in the anthropology department that has been broken since I've gone here (almost 4 years ago). It's really absurd that it's a problem that's been neglected. I don’t mean to be rude but isn’t this what we are paying maintenance for!?

Answer: It is unfortunate that this water fountain has been out of order for so long. I have asked a colleague (with better computer skills than I) to submit a work order request to fix the water fountain.

I don’t know why this problem lingered for so long, but there is perhaps a lesson here: One should not assume that anyone else has made Facilities aware of a problem. They will address any problem about which they have been contacted—but they cannot read minds.

As I mentioned in my previous answer, you may submit a work order request online—and once you have a work order number, you may track the progress of the work request.

Question: PERTAINING TO WOMEN: This query goes in the personal section for sure: Why are there never any tampons in the dispenser machines in the women's bathrooms on campus? And moreover, why in most of the bathrooms are there even no machines to begin with?! Is a women's menstruation something we still aren't supposed to talk about or even acknowledge exists?

Answer: Thank goodness that these matters may be spoken of publicly in these modern times!

This issue can be addressed by Facilities, but—at the risk of being repetitive—it cannot be addressed if they are not made aware of the problem. Please complete a work order request, indicating which bathrooms lack machines or have empty machines—and you will become a part of the solution.

Question: How come we can't get into other residence halls using our own Wickit cards from 7 p.m.-9 a.m.? I understand not being able to get into other buildings all of the time, but 7 p.m. is too early. I think it is safe to say that most students are still awake and ready to do things by 7 p.m., including hanging out or studying with their friends in other dorms. I often go to other dorms to study with other students (very rarely before 7 p.m.) and it is obnoxious to have to call people to come let me in at 7 p.m. I think we are old enough, and paying enough tuition, to be allowed access to other dorms past 7 p.m.

Answer: This schedule was decided when the ID card system was first put in place, to help in reducing vandalism in the residence halls. Prior to the ID card system, the majority of incidents of vandalism took place in the evenings, and it wasn’t always the people who lived in those residence halls who were responsible. By implementing the 7 p.m. restriction, anyone in the building after that time must be let in by a resident of that building, and therefore accounted for. People are less likely to damage their own residence hall (though it does happen) because they will be charged for the damages.

This system has resulted in a reduction in vandalism. Five years ago, before the system was in place, we had approximately $60,000 worth of residence hall damages. Each of the last two years we have had under $17,000 of damage to all of the residence halls.

Question: Dear Charlotte, Is there any way to set the dorm elevators so they don't "ding" every time they arrive on a floor? There is an elevator right next to my door, and the people using it late at night are usually loud enough by themselves to be a disturbance, but the "ding" seems to make it so much worse. Would maintenance be able to solve this problem? Thanks! A

nswer: According to my friends in Facilities, the “ding” is required in order to alert a visually impaired individual that the elevator car has arrived at its destination. Unfortunately, accessibility laws prevent us from disabling this device.

Question: I live in Van Ess and our rooms are so hot! Is there any way to get the heat turned down? I, along with many other girls in the building leave our windows open all the time because of the high temperature. Even with the windows open and my fan on, it is still very warm in my room. It is wasteful and expensive to have our windows open all of the time while the heat is on, but it is just too hot!

Answer: As you might know, there are no individual room thermostats in Van Ess. There are two zones: one being the valley side of the building, the other is the hill side. Facilities does its best to strike a balance, whereby the number of rooms which are at either temperature extreme is minimized. If residents are uncomfortable, they can submit a work order request, and Facilities will do what they can.

Question: I'm an environmentally concerned student living in a Townhouse. There has been a serious lack of recycling going on at the Townhouses, and a serious amount of discrepancy about what actually happens to items placed in Hartwick-issued recycling bins. Can you clarify the process that occurs when items are taken by facilities from the blue recycling bins? Some say that all the items are thrown together as a means to meet refuse-weight quotas and that recycling doesn't actually occur and the bins are a ruse. Others say the items are thrown together and re-separated and then recycled. Nobody seems to have a straight answer! What is the exact process that occurs after facilities comes to collect the items deposited in the blue recycling bins? Where do they go? More detail is preferable to less, please!

Answer: From my colleagues in Facilities: Hartwick College Facilities is fully committed to the recycling program. On a daily basis, an employee collects cardboard and other items from the recycling bins, and delivers them to the regional transfer station located on Route 205. There is no attempt to meet any quotas. Recycled items are not thrown together with non-recyclables.

Please encourage your neighbors in the Townhouses to recycle!