By Kurdistan Fatih
AUI-S Voice Staff Reporter
|Photo by Noor Aljanabi -AUI-S Voice
Presidency Building and Academic Building near completion.
The AUI-S new campus are planned to be ready to be used for the next academic semester, fall 2011. Even though it was suppose to be ready for this current spring 2010 semester, and students were suppose to study at it, due to some problems the building is not ready to use.
The construction process started about four years ago, in mid- 2007.
The materials used in the buildings everything related to the construction process including the design have come from the outside of Iraq. The workers who participate in building the new campus are mostly from outside of Iraq. Considering the opinion of students from AUI-S and their concerns about the slow process of finishing the projects, Salahaddin Sharif, Senior Structure Engineer, told AUI-S Voice that the process is not that slow taking into account that engineering projects have certain rules and procedures to follow.
Sharif said that there are usually time bounds for completing projects in contracts. But the difficulties that may appear and face the project are the reason for slowing down the process. He added that these types of delays that are out of the control of engineers and those who work in the process are normal and can happen in any engineering project. He also added that one of the delay reasons arise from funding and cash problems.Sharif pointed out that some delays are because of the modifications that happened in the construction building.
“We have changed the plans that we had for the academic building and the lecture halls based on the requirements and adjustments that the faculty from the University wanted to have,” Sharif added.
Sharif states that the design and the specifications of the new campus are not similar to any building in around here that is why the process takes time. He said promises were given to move students to the academic building only because most of the necessary parts are finished but there are certain items in that building to work on in order to have it completely finished and ready to use.
Sharif added that the administration building is behind schedule unlike the academic building. The engineer states that having buildings is not enough since there is still some work to be done.
The building has to be supplied with power otherwise the buildings alone are of no use. The power will be provided from a department on the new campus called Central Energy Plant (CEP) which will be able to provide the buildings with power.
The engineer said unless the CEP is finished, the buildings will not be ready to use because as a result of not having the CEP finished AUI-S will lack simple things lack air conditioning, cool, and hot water. About the dorms, there will be very modern residence halls. The size of the dorm buildings is larger than the other buildings and the furniture that needs to be moved there will take time.
Therefore they will take longer time to be ready to be used by students. He also added the contract of the dorms is different and they need two years to be finished. As far as the IT department is concerned, Omer Khan, Director of IT department, said there are hopes to move to the new campus soon.
“From the discussions and meetings we had, I think the chances of going to the new campus for the next academic semester is quite high,” said Khan. “We are pretty much keeping our eyes on having the next semester in there.” The IT department director confirmed that the cabling or the backbone of the new labs is near completion to which devices need to be connected. The new devices that are going to be used in the new campus will arrive in the next ten days. These devices need to be connected and tested which will take another month or more.
Khan added that existing IT staff will move to the new campus and will be responsible for services along with other things related to IT. There high hopes that the next semester will start in the new campus. However, students had a different say in this process.
Nawras Anwar, an academic student, from Sulaimani, said that because of lack of enough space in the current campus, many issues arise.
“If we move to the new campus, professors can easily control cheating because we will have more space and students will not be sitting too close to each other during exams,” said Anwar. Students say that the name of our university basically does not match with the reality on campus.
“It is a good idea to move to the new campus because having class in those cabins makes you feel you are inside a military camp,” said Dea Dlawar, an academic student, from Sulaimani.