Okay, okay. I will admit it: I am a mama’s boy. My parents and I will talk on the phone at least once a day and I have always been close to my family. Despite them living a little over 1,000 miles away, I still want to tell them everything that is going on in my life. However, this year at NSU, I developed an interesting quirk when making these phone calls due to circumstances ultimately beyond my control.
Stay with me here, but I have found myself making these daily phone calls just when I am about to leave my dorm, which is interesting, considering that when I am leaving my dorm, it is likely to take a walk somewhere on campus, resulting in a commute of about 10 minutes. There are other times when I will make these calls in public spaces as well. I know I am a horrible person, but hear me out. I will be in the University Center taking a 10-minute break from my normal schedule to call my parents.
These decisions I have been making to take these phone calls in unusual places has had me thinking. Why am I making phone calls outside of the comfort of my own dorm? Why not find some free time to sit down on my bed and truly speak with my family? Then I realized how much of an impact the dead zones at NSU have had.
As a residential student, it is likely that you will run into some unique problems within these circumstances. The most recent problem that has gotten me frustrated is the cellular dead zones present within Mako Hall. Any student living on the far wings of the building is likely to experience the dead zones depending on their cell service provider. Within these zones, it becomes close to impossible to have a successful phone call, not only will the person in Mako being unable to hear properly, but the individual on the other end of the call having an almost impossible time understanding the caller. As I am sure it can be inferred, this problem becomes specifically frustrating due to how close I am with my family.
I am unable to comfortably be in my dorm and make a phone call to my parents who are states away, wondering what I have been up to. On a positive note, I am fortunate enough to have a physical support group. However, not everyone is as lucky as me. In this uncertain and isolating time, it can be tough for any student living on campus. Some students are relying on making phone calls from miles away to have a support group to lean on, and with these horrendous dead zones, individuals can potentially be left without any options.
And yes, if you are wondering if I reached out to the Office of Innovation and Information, I did. While they did respond back to my request fairly quickly — an opportunity some friends of mine have been waiting weeks for — their response was pretty much the worst outcome available. I was essentially told that nothing could be done, and because I have Verizon, I will continue to experience these dead zones in my dorm. The staff member I spoke to also mentioned that any carrier besides T-mobile, NSU’s official carrier, will experience these dead zones. How can all residential students realistically be asked to have one carrier? Students living on campus come from all parts of the world and expecting every student in the dorm to have one cell carrier is ridiculous.
I just want to go back to being able to call my parents in the comfort of my own room. With how much residential students pay to live in on-campus housing, this is a privilege we all deserve.