Water infiltrated Joslyn Miranda’s dorm room leading to mold growth.
Water Damage Causes Mold Growth in Campion Hall Dorm Room
First-year Campion Hall residents Joslyn Miranda and her roommate, who declined to interview, were uprooted from their residence hall after water from the pipes infiltrated their room and led to mold growth.
On Sept. 11, Miranda said she discovered the piping in her room had leaked into the carpet as half of it was soaked with water. As the water was left sitting in their carpet, she said an unpleasant smell began to develop.
Miranda said she immediately submitted a work order about the issue but didn’t receive assistance until the next night after calling Campus Safety three times to complain. Even after the carpet was clean, Miranda said the stench was still present.
“Our carpet smelled clean, but the smell still lingered, so that’s when I was like, ‘There’s gonna be mold growing in here,’” Miranda said.
The two students remained in their room for the next three days, but Miranda said they began waking up congested. After being dismissed by maintenance when explaining how cleaning the carpet wouldn’t solve the issue, Miranda said she took matters into her own hands and bought a mold test kit on Amazon.
The test confirmed her suspicions and showed mold was accumulating in her room.
“We kept sending emails saying, ‘Hey we need temporary housing, like, there’s no way we can sleep in here tonight,’” Miranda said. “They were kind of just like, ‘Oh there’s a waitlist and process.’ But this was an emergency.”
Despite her consistent communication to the Campion Hall front desk, Residence Life and Campus Safety, Miranda said she didn’t believe the urgency of her situation was being understood.
Miranda said she and her roommate remained out of the room the majority of their time as the smell became overwhelming. After four days of complaints, Residence Life listened to their concerns and moved them to temporary housing.
Addressing health and safety complaints is a high priority of the university, according to an email to The Phoenix from Loyola spokesperson Matt McDermott, who spoke on behalf of Campus Safety and the Department of Residence Life.
“Loyola University Chicago promptly follows industrial hygienist standards and protocols for responding to a complaint of mold, including necessary testing and remediation,” McDermott wrote in an email to The Phoenix. “These complaints are taken seriously and addressed as soon as possible.”
The roommates were moved into St. Joseph’s Hall Sept. 14, which would become their home for the next month and a half.
While Miranda said her time at St. Joseph’s wasn’t bad, she said she disliked being displaced in an environment “different” than the living situation she had become used to at Campion Hall. The temporary housing in St. Joseph’s was a bigger accommodation and included a private bathroom which was a significant change to their norm, according to Miranda.
“It felt like a new world,” Miranda said. “Walking into Campion and then walking into St. Joseph’s, the lighting and even how it smelled was so different.”
The two girls had all of their belongings in their room packed away and sent to be professionally cleaned, which Miranda said was an inconvenience. They each received a $250 Amazon gift card from the university but said they are still awaiting full compensation for their items which had to be disposed of.
“I understand that things can’t happen extremely fast, but I also feel they failed to communicate and listen to our concerns,” Miranda said.
Miranda and her roommate were moved back into Campion Hall Oct. 31 where Miranda said their room was unrecognizable to the space they had once lived in due to its vacant appearance. They’ve just begun unpacking all of their belongings and putting their room back together, according to Miranda.
“I think it’s just really a communication problem and listening to concerns,” Miranda said. “I understand as a university they’re not going to be able to do everything right away and listen to everyone’s problems but when there’s certain concerns, like housing, they need to listen to that.”
Featured image courtesy of Allison Treanor