This semester, I moved into a space that was not ready to be lived in. My Farr Apartment is brand new, and yes, the space has extremely nice aspects. I was thrilled to get a single in an apartment when I returned from off-campus study, and it has all the amenities I could have asked for. However, it lacked one crucial aspect of a living space: privacy.
When I first moved in, maintenance staff was there almost every day. The air conditioning and heating units were not set up properly, and there was a large leak in the ceiling, causing water damage. Sometimes staff arrived with a warning, but usually without.
Furthermore, the fire sprinklers were not installed properly. They had to drill into the wall surrounding the sprinklers, leaving a mess of ceiling debris on my clothes, bed and floor. They even stepped on my unmade bed with shoes on to reach the sprinkler above it.
My bathroom door does not lock. Because of this, I feel uncomfortable showering or going to the bathroom while there are often multiple maintenance workers standing right outside the door. I have skipped showers or showered elsewhere in fear of someone opening the door on me. I alerted them to the fact that the door does not lock, yet the situation has yet to be addressed. I cannot even file a work order for my apartment because it is not in the system properly.
Now, reunion staff have asked to be given tours of my apartment. My personal living space is a spectacle that everyone can enjoy except me. I am not asking for pity or an apology. After the privacy issues that Sisterhood faced in their own home, my problems feel small. I am grateful to be living in such a new and beautiful space, but I worry that much of the new construction is being done too quickly and carelessly. Many of the issues that have arisen could have been avoided if the construction timeline was not rushed or incomplete by the time I arrived on campus.
I urge Kenyon to take care in their construction of these new buildings all over campus before they are inhabited by students, especially if the administration wants them lived in for many years. Everyone deserves comfort and privacy in their own living space in order to make it feel like a home. And my apartment does not feel like a home.
Becca Foley ’20 is a modern languages and literatures major from Wooster, Ohio. You can contact her at email@example.com.