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August 20, 2008 | by  | in Online Only |
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2,4,6,8 – Why’s our Hostel in Such a State?

How many builders does it take to fix a hostel? Fucking shit loads, apparently. And they haven’t been doing a very good job of it. Salient has been closely following the colossal fuck ups by Unicomm – the company (owned by ING) whose responsible for maintaining hostel facilities at McKenzies, Cumberland and Education house.

It seems like the students there have had enough. Not only are they fed up with the constant intrusion into their living spaces, by burly builders – but it seems that the promises given to them by management have been empty and vacuous.

There’s been no visible change in their living conditions, which according to eyewitness testimony, are pretty fucking dire. Here are some quotes from concerned students.

“I woke up to see my skylight missing and a builder staring at me through my roof, I was extremely uncomfortable so went and slept on the couch”

“they promised to have all the work done by the time we moved in.”

“my dad had to fly me home so i could study during study week it cost him almost $300. we are paying for a study environment that we arent getting.”

“exploding water tanks, exploding sewage pipes, the waterfall tourist attraction in MacKenzies”

“Leaking roofs and jackhammer wake ups.. gotta love it….. not!”

“Try fucking waking up at 6;30 in the morning to a crane outside your window when you have an early exam that morning!!! AGH”

“people are mean, living conditions are shit !!!!”

“There was also a mushroom growing out of the wall “

“Jackhammer……………cause it is a wonderful thing to wake up to in the morn!!!”

Usually, i’d tell these annoying whingy first years to suck it up. But then i realised they weren’t living in scummy Te Aro hovels, but in a commercial hospo enterprise – that really should be providing a better service. A substantially better one. I don’t know how these poor kiddos have managed so far – I cant study unless im in an isolation chamber, buried underground in a vacuum cave.

The straw has broken the proverbial camels back – as reported in last weeks eye on exec, students have taken the matter into their own hands – by getting out there to protest. Show your support, by turning up to the Student Union Building at 9.30am on Friday. It’s them vs the world (or just Unicomm). Go give em a hand.

Or, if you nosy enough to care, but too lazy to go – just check out their facebook or bebo pages.

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About the Author ()

Conrad is a very grumpy boy. When he was little he had a curl in the middle of his forehead. When he was good, he was moderately good, but when he was mean he was HORRID. He likes guns, bombs and shooting doves. He can often be found reading books about Mussolini and tank warfare. His greatest dream is to invent an eighteen foot high mechanical spider, which has an antimatter lazer attached to its back.

Comments (8)

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  1. Jackson Wood says:

    I was there in my first year 2004, and although there wasn’t construction work going on, it was still pretty shit then, and management was unresponsive to student complaints…

    My advice: Burn it down. Start again.

  2. Unicomm’s response so far is to hide: according to the organisers of vic’s open day (friday), unicomm have cancelled their stalls and tour for fear that prospective students will be told true things… so they’re giving prospects a drive-by ‘look’ at the hall instead. Lame.

  3. Jenna Powell says:

    I am writing a feature on all of this. If you have any Unicomm horror stories please get in touch with me at jenna@salient.org.nz and I’ll drop you a line.

  4. Patrick says:

    Why the hell is student accommodation a commercial enterprise?

    I know it’s not really practical at this stage in the game, but taking a page from Otago’s book (they have 13 University owned and run halls of residence) would be so much better.

  5. Olivia says:

    Thank goodness for open day!!!!
    You guys did a great job and well done for speaking out – especially on open day.
    Definitely changing my accom choice for next yr!

  6. Gibbon says:

    So yeah where were the protestors? went past about six times, would’ve liked to have had the chance to express my support.

  7. Harley says:

    maybe people should get their facts straight about unicomms involvement in open day activities. Unicomm was asked by victoria uni not to have tours on open day because it would antagonise the current students – i dont think that they would have really given a shit though, and they didnt have a stand for mckenzie, cumberland and education house for the same reason.

  8. Deats says:

    yo im hopefully going vic uni next year and am thinking of going cumberland. Is it still in a bad state because i have been told it will be fine next year. Is this true?

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