Waynesburg University has recently offered air purifiers to any student living in a traditional dorm or on-campus house who would like one. The University’s Emergency Task Force, a panel of individuals that review the best practices for the campus regarding the COVID-19 pandemic, decided to invest in air purifiers in order to help with the airflow in the older dorms and houses.
Matt Pioch, assistant dean of Student Services and resident director of Thayer Hall, said he has high hopes that these air purifiers will provide positive results for the students using them.
“It was seen as best practice to pursue a way to create more clean air in the buildings,” Pioch said. “The best way to do that was to equip each student with the opportunity to get their own air purifier.”
To ensure each hall has cleaner air that is well circulated, the university also decided to place large air purifiers in each of the lounges of these dorms. Traditional dorms provided with the purifiers include Ray, Denny, Burns, Thayer and Martin Halls.
The distribution process of the air purifiers was performed by the resident directors of each dorm. Annie Maxwell oversees both Ray and Denny Hall. She was in charge of getting each requested air purifier to the student’s rooms.
“Those who had signed up previously when the email first went out were kind of the first come first serve people that got the air purifiers,” Maxwell said. “Then throughout the weekend I had my resident assistant that was on rounds knocking on doors seeing who wanted any air purifiers that were left.”
The administration has received some compliments from students that are benefiting from these air purifiers.
“I think it has been pretty successful. When I walk around Thayer Hall, I see a lot of the air purifiers are in use, they are not just sitting in the student’s rooms. They are actually turned on and doing things,” Pioch said. “I have heard a couple students say they have really enjoyed having them.”
Maxwell agreed with the effectiveness of the new system, “I haven’t had anyone say anything negative about them,” she said. “I know students feel more comfortable with them in their rooms and I hope that the air purifiers are making their ventilation better and giving them cleaner air.”
Although students value the new contribution to the dorms, some have provided alternative feedback.
“I feel like it cools the room more than purifies it,” said Marley Stambaugh, a freshman resident of Burns Hall.
“Honestly, it doesn’t feel like it’s making that big of a difference. We are still just as congested as normal, and it doesn’t help with allergies,” Sadie Mink, a freshman who resides in Ray Hall said. “It does seem to cool the room down a little bit more though.”
Pioch said the extra air purifiers are going to be redistributed into some classrooms and other buildings across campus that could benefit from having cleaner air and better airflow.
If a student is interested in possibly obtaining an air purifier for their room, they can contact Resident Director Annie Maxwell at firstname.lastname@example.org.