seek serif;”>UCD have employed third party ‘safety wardens’ to ensure normal operations can continue while refurbishment work takes place in the Newman Building. This follows the decision to economise UCD services replacing service desks and staff with computers and one centralised campus services building.
find serif;”>The Newman Building, which is home to the university’s Arts faculty, is undergoing a number of improvements to its fire safety management system. The refurbishment of the building, planned to facilitate increased capacity for the future, is expected to be completed before the commencement of semester two of this academic year.
Noonan, a leading supplier of contracted facility services, have been engaged by the college to comply with health and safety regulations. The safety wardens are stationed all around the building and on each of the five floors.
When asked his opinion on the wardens around the building, third year arts student David told the Tribune “I think it’s ridiculous. The education budget is being cut all the time yet UCD are paying to have a load of security walk around talking to each other.” UCD officials were similarly criticised for their employment of extra security staff during the final week of last semester in anticipation of trouble resulting from the initial cancellation of the UCD Ball.
This academic year has also seen UCD roll out a more economised services system. UCD service desks, which were located across the Belfield campus, have been replaced with UCD service computers and emergency phones. The computers allow students and staff to access services such as maps, staff directories, event listings and IT. The terminals also allow building users to book rooms and audio visual equipment as well as reporting issues and emergencies. The one manned service desk is now located in the Agricultural Science Building. The goal of the move is to make UCD’s services more financially efficient in the wake of further budget cuts.
Pat de Brun, UCDSU president, feels the move is “madness.” Second year, Agricultural Science student, Jordan, agrees. “I’ve only used the computers once and they’re really annoying; I don’t understand why they would give computers preference over people” Sophie Kelly