Columbia Housing may have issues, but that shouldn’t impact our impressions of the many facilities workers who clean and repair our dorms on a daily basis. As we approach Thanksgiving, here are some ways that you can show your appreciation to the hardworking people who keep our dorms from falling apart.

Do as Aretha would have.

  • Say hi to facilities when they’re on your floor. They are human beings!
  • Understand that they’re doing their best and that it’s not their fault your heating isn’t on.
  • Don’t put stickers for your startup on public tables.
  • Clean up!!!! Your own!!!! Puke!!!
  • Flush. Just because you don’t do it at home doesn’t mean you don’t have to at school.
  • Don’t leave your freaking hair in the drains!
  • Clean up after your shower.

  • Pick up shit you drop in the halls, including (but not limited to) trash and clothing.
  • This is a rampant problem in JJ’s: stop moving furniture to different floors. It forces facilities to move heavy couches, chairs, and tables up and down elevators regularly.
  • Facilities is not your maid! They are mainly there to FIX things that are broken—not just to clean up your mess in the hallways and bathrooms!
  • In general: clean even if it can’t be traced back to you. It’s not about avoiding responsibility, it’s about not being an absolute shitbird.
  • Don’t leave huge amounts of boxes in trash rooms that obstruct it. If you have a lot to chuck out/recycle, there’s usually a place in the basement to dispose of it.

Keep everything lookin’ this good.

  • Don’t throw out food items or trash from your room in the communal bathroom trash receptacles. They’re made for paper towels, not food waste, and things rot in there quickly because of the high humidity.
  • Don’t leave weird suspect blobs on the shower walls—rinse it down the drain. Otherwise, the people who have to clean it WILL assume it is something very gross and be fucking disgusted.
  • Notify facilities immediately if your sink or shower is clogged and won’t drain (or unclog it yourself). If you leave it clogged with water resting in the bottom, a disgusting scummy slime will form that will then be nasty for them to clean off. It will also encourage the growth of mold, which is harmful to your health.
  • If the communal trash on your floor is full (e.g., kitchen or hallway trash cans) do not shove your things on top and cause a trash-valanche.
  • Clean the kitchen in housing where facilities have to clean. They aren’t paid enough to be dealing with absolute disgustingness. Besides, if you leave it absolutely fucked, they can’t clean it properly and can only do a half decent job.
  • And, of course, the golden rule: be polite.


Aretha Franklin via Wikimedia Commons

 Columbia Campus via Wikimedia Commons