Last year for landlines in dorms

Rabab Al-Sharif

Residence Services to remove because lack of usage

This time next year, the landlines in dorm rooms will be a thing of the past.

Director of Residence Services, Betsy Joseph, said that Residence Services has been discussing removing the landlines for about four years, but because of a financial obligation to pay for the landlines for 10 years, they have held off.

“It was not going to result in any savings, and we still had students that were using the landlines, (so) we have made the decision to keep them,” Joseph said.

Residence Services has been working with Information Services to track the usage of the landlines each fall since 2006, and the usage has decreased each year with only 214 of the 3500 dorm lines making at least one call in 2009.

Some students living in the residence halls said they weren’t aware of the landline.

“I totally didn’t even know there was a landline in the room,” said Stephanie Bierstet a freshman nursing major.

Mohammad Doleh, a freshman computer science major said he knew about the landlines, but he doesn’t need to use it.

“Most people just have their cell phones,” Doleh said.

Residence Services already has a plan to use the money that will be saved from removing the landlines.

“Moneys that helped to pay for landlines are going to be redirected to help pay for wireless (Internet),” Joseph said. “By next fall, there will be wireless in all of the residence halls.”

Many students think the change will be good.

“I think Wi-Fi is the way to go anyway,’’ Bierstet said.

Residence Services won’t be getting rid of all the landlines though. They plan to keep about 500 lines.

There will still be landline phones at the front office of each dorm as well as one in each residence assistant room.

“We don’t want RA’s cell phones to be dead,” Joseph said. “We need them to be able to have access for them to make emergency calls or contacts when that’s necessary.”

They haven’t discussed yet whether or not students will be able to individually subscribe to have a landline, Joseph said.

“We really don’t anticipate that there’s going to be an issue because many colleges and universities have made this transition several years ago,” Joseph said.

Contact Rabab Al-Sharif at [email protected].