Pressures on space is nothing new this year. By this point, we all know about the University’s plan to increase the number of students at UEA, and the overcrowding this has created.
But this has also affected the amount of social and study space. The Library, Unio, Ziggy’s, Scholars, the Hive and any other available space on campus is jam-packed, and as the second-years will know, this only gets worse the closer we get to exam season.
I’ve been pushing the University on this issue all year, and in response they agreed to significant renovations to two floors of the library, creating up to 200 new study spaces by next year.
However, this doesn’t do anything to help students now. That’s why I’ve been asking the University to consider short-term options to help students find place to study.
I’m thrilled to announce that the University are introducing a “revision suite” on Floor 01 of the Arts building. During exam season, students will be able to use this space for studying.
We’ve ensured that there are enough plug sockets in this space for laptops. Some rooms will be dedicated individual study spaces, whereas others will be used for group study.
The University are also letting students access the small kitchen on Floor 01. This is equipped with a microwave and a boiling water tap for food and drink. We’ve also argued that the University should provide room for a “chill out space” with relaxing chairs and bean-bags, so students can have a place to relax during the exam season.
Ultimately, I still believe the Library needs a proper extension, with a new block built on its South Corner. But I’m aware that can’t happen overnight, and in the meantime I am really pleased to see that the University is acknowledging the need for a short-term solution.