This archived article was written by: Jeremy Jones
Sessions Hall residents recently had their phones fixed after most of them had been not in working condition for over a month. At the beginning of the year, signs were posted in Sessions that said, “Notice, we regret to inform you that some telephone lines are not in service at the moment due to maintenance repairs and upgrades.”
The maintenance work was necessary because the phones in Sessions Hall were routed through the old Main Building originally. Since the building is going to be torn down next month, all of the phone lines had to be moved into the Leavitt Student Center.
The residents were told at the first of the year that the phones would all go down at the same time for about a week so the lines could be worked on. Then everything would go back to normal. The residents were also told that there would be forewarning when the phones would be down.
But, without any warning or advisement to the residents of Sessions, the phones just stopped working. No one knew why. They just did. The residents, understanding that these buildings are old and sometimes problems occur, were patient and didn’t say anything right away.
But the problems dragged on and became worse. Some phones cut out completely and didn’t work for over a month. Others were sporadic. A phone would work one day, but not the next. Still other phones worked the entire time without any problems.
After a couple of weeks of being without phones, the residents of Sessions started to wonder what was going on. Audra Enloe, a CEU student and resident of Sessions, said, “It’s a pain in the butt. I live in Idaho and there is no other way for me to talk to my family. I can’t ever go home on the weekends to see them, so the phones are all I’ve got.”
The signs had been posted, but there had not been any warning and it had been a few weeks that many phones did not work. They thought the problem should have been remedied. Many students went to their RAs for answers, but they didn’t have any phone service either. Debbie Clark, an RA in Sessions, said, “A lot of people complained to me and asked me what was going on, but I didn’t know what to tell them. I had no idea either.”
While some of the phones continued to work properly throughout fall semester, but as of last Tuesday, 17 out of the 36 occupied rooms did not have a functioning phone.
The problem got so bad that some of the Session’s residents got a group together and went to the help desk person to complain and try to resolve the problem. This group of students was puzzled to find out that the help desk had been informed two weeks earlier that all of the phones in Sessions were working.
The help desk contacted the IT department on campus to inform them that the phones in Sessions still weren’t working, so some action needed to be taken. The student demonstration occurred on Thursday, October 16. Since that time, steps have been taken to remedy the problem.
On Tuesday, October 20, a port in the switch that had gone bad was replaced, which helped with some of the problems. After that, the IT department was able to connect the phones to the switch, so they work again.
As of now, all but one of the phones in Sessions are in working order. But the effects of the phone outage are still being felt in Sessions. Ben Burt, another resident of Sessions said, “I missed two dates over that month that I could have had if the phones had worked. It’s no surprise, though. Here at CEU, things just don’t work right. This is my third semester and things just don’t work right here.
Abbie Mumford added, “I couldn’t get any messages for two weeks. I didn’t actually miss anything really important, but someone in my family could have died and I would have never known.
Another Sessions’ resident did miss some important events due to the phones being out. “I missed the birth of my first nephew. I wanted to be there for it, but I couldn’t get the message because my phone didn’t work. Later, my best friend died and I missed the funeral and everything because the phones were out and no one could figure out how to get a hold of me.”
Michael Adams also said he missed some important things as well. “I missed a job opportunity. I couldn’t check my messages for a long time and when I finally could, there was a message from about two weeks ago saying that I could have a job I had applied for. I called them back, but the job was already gone.” Adams added, ” I’m still a little torqued about that.”
Cale Cranney and Micah Iverson summed up the entire experience in two words, “It sucked!”