Students react to state of campus laundry facilities

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Mashuda residence hall’s laundry room.

As the fall semester comes to a close a rise in concern over campus laundry facilities has become a talking point for many students who live on campus.

Mike Jahner, Director of Facilities Management, said Marquette University has paired with WASH laundry for the campus laundry facilities. Jahner said WASH laundry is accountable for placing the washers and dryers into the laundry rooms and maintaining them when they are broken and need fixing.

But many Schroeder residents feel that there are not enough washers and dryers for 660 students and that the laundry room is constantly dirty and not properly taken care of. 

Jahner said facilities planning and management checks the laundry facilities daily in each residence hall as well as campus-owned apartment buildings and cleans them. Jahner also said that WASH goes weekly to thoroughly clean each machine and ensure the washer gaskets are functioning properly.

Although facilities planning and management said they clean the machines when needed, some students feel that their cleaning is not adequate.

Eleanora Malouf, a sophomore in the College of Business Administration and resident at Schroeder Hall, said she wishes Marquette would find a different company to purchase and maintain for the washers and dryers.

“If replacing the washers and dryers are not possible, then I think they should be regularly cleaned out to get rid of any odor,” Malouf said in an email.

Schroeder washroom has ten washers and dryers each for the entire residence hall, which many students feel is not enough for the number of sophomores the residence hall houses.

The Commons, comprised of both Eckstein and Wells Tower consist of 10 washers and dryers while Eckstein houses 400 residents while Wells can house up to 472. Together The Commons houses almost 1,000 residents.

“Our partner [WASH laundry] used a formula based on [the] number of residents and a few other factors to select the proper number of units in each building,” Jahner said. “This formula was used in each building on campus.”

Jahner said as long as students retrieve their clothing from the machines at the correct time and scan the machine’s code with their phone, the formula is supposed to be accurate and the washers/dryers should be open for all students to use.

After scanning a washer or dryers’ code, Jahner said it will take one to the work order system for WASH laundry.

“It depends on the day, but on a weekday I find there are either washers and dryers open or you have to wait a maximum of ten minutes and that’s if the person takes their clothes out in time,” Malouf said in an email. “On the weekends you definitely can wait up to an hour … I definitely think they should add a couple more, but the one positive thing is the website where you can check before you go to the basement if they are taken or not.”

Every Marquette residence hall and apartment building washroom has a wash alert system which can be found online. Students can access this website to see which washers and/or dryers are being used and how much time they have left in their cycle.

William Clancy, a sophomore in the College of Arts & Sciences, also lives in Schroeder and said the laundry room could definitely be improved.

“It’s always really busy and a lot of the machines are never really clean,” Clancy said in an email. “Sometimes the washers are open when I go down, but otherwise it can take up to 30 minutes especially if people don’t get their clothes.”

Schroeder resident, Michael McNee, a sophomore in the College of Communication, also said how it’s annoying when there is a long wait time to use a washer or dryer.

“It usually takes 15-20 minutes for a washer to open up at Schroeder. It is extremely frustrating when all the washers are taken. I do think [that] Schroeder needs more washers,” McNee said in an email.

Clancy, Malouf and McNee previously lived in the Commons where they expressed that the laundry room never had many issues.

“They [the Commons’ facilities] were a lot nicer and I had no issues with them and never had to wait for a washer or dryer which I assume is because Commons is a newer dorm and they have all new washers and dryers,” Malouf said in an email.

McNee agreed with Malouf and said that the Commons had much nicer facilities due to the laundry room having more washers and dryers and the machines being newer.

“The maintenance at Schroeder is the same as in other buildings. We are looking into installing some additional fans to help the dryers vent more efficiently (in Abbottsford as well),” Jahner said.

Jahner said each laundry facility was installed differently in each residence hall to adapt to a room that may not have been intended for laundry; therefore, since the Commons is a newer residence hall, Jahner said the laundry room was specifically installed to be used for laundry.

“FP&M has been working with the Division of Student Affairs and the Office of Residence Life to respond to items brought to our attention,” Jahner said. “If we have an issue with the machine, we make sure the vendor is aware. If we have an issue with how the machine is being used, we offer that feedback to the student with the concern.”

This story was written by Julia Abuzzahab. She can be reached at julianna.abuzzahab@marquette.edu