EDITORIAL: Centralized offices will boost efficiency
Students should be involved in app development
Many major complaints that Rutgers students have seem to stem from administrative insufficiencies, where attempting to solve problems with financial aid, parking, scheduling and other related issues are much more difficult than they ideally should be. Students often run around looking for the right office or the right person to help them. But there is hope, because relatively soon the University will be implementing a “One-Stop Center” where the aforementioned, highly sought-after offices and people will be located. Offices will possibly begin to open on location by this coming summer, though the entire Center will not be complete
In the future, there will be centers on each Rutgers—New Brunswick campus, but for now the new center will be located on Busch campus at the current site of the Administrative Services Building (ASB1). This location allows for a sufficient amount of parking accessibility.
To identify this as one of the pain points that Rutgers students experience, the University utilized a survey. This is somewhat heartening, because it often seems like the administration arguably does not take student input into consideration as much as they should. There is no doubt that this is a commonly held problem among students, but the question is whether this One-Stop Center idea is the best way to solve the issue.
It does seem reasonable to say that this idea might be at least one good way of addressing the problem and streamlining the services that these offices offer. Students have a lot to worry about, and being shuffled from person to person or office to office adds unneeded stress to their lives. So, to have all of these offices in the same place might conceivably save students a significant amount of precious time.
In addition to the One-Stop Center, there is also a push for the development of smartphone applications that will ease the ability to solve one’s own problems efficiently. For example, enhancements to online services will include self-service mobile applications for financial aid, student accounting and registration.
Furthermore, regarding the mobile application, it would seemingly make sense for a significant amount of student input there as well. Students will utilize and rely on these applications most frequently; thus, it would make sense for administrators to get ideas from students regarding the mobile application. One interesting thing to do may be to ask students — specifically computer science students — to propose application formats and systems that they think would be most efficient and beneficial. An application designed by students for students could conceivably address their preferences more accurately.
While a mobile application is clearly a good idea as well, there is really nothing like face-to-face conversations when one is trying to thoroughly flesh out the problem they are facing. Advisers and administrators need to be available for contact, but when you have a school with approximately 50,000 students, it is not always possible to provide quick and easy help to students at all times. In that sense, maybe additional personnel — or at least better-trained personnel — could be sought after to increase efficiency.
For students who still have a few years left at Rutgers, this new center will likely somewhat reduce frustrations in the future. As Rutgers continues to put effort into improving the student experience, access to day-to-day help from administrators will remain as important as ever. So if we are to make the student experience the best it can be, efficient and productive services are essential.
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