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Positive relationships could improve campus morale

By Vesma Pennant
On February 6, 2013

Every year as each semester begins, complaints spill from the mouths of students about the customer service they have received from either housing or financial aid. Many brush it off and continue to deal with the hassle of getting things situated, but for some it could lead to the transfer of schools.
 In fall 2011, Justin Patterson, a senior marketing major, transferred to the University of Texas at Dallas for a semester due to alleged technical difficulties and poor service from the financial aid office.
"Over the summer I had to keep calling the financial aid office to fix everything. They were very nonchalant; it was as if they did not care. I was dropped from all of my classes and my financial aid was not being processed in a timely manner. The level of difficulty dealing with financial aid services ultimately led to me transferring to another institution. The customer service at UTD was amazing. They had more staff and utilized their technology better," said Patterson.
For those who have stuck around at Prairie View A&M University, dealing with the inconsistencies of financial aid has become more and more of a hassle.
Roberto Murga, a junior architecture and construction science major, said, "At the beginning of last semester, I had to go to financial aid to deposit a check for a scholarship and I had to wait in the line from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. It just takes so much time at the beginning of the semester."
Despite having to wait long hours, which could feel like an eternity, to handle a situation, some students have never had the thought of transferring school cross their minds.
Blair Lewis-Thomas, a senior sociology major, said, "Every school service is bad. Other schools are just more organized than PVAMU which makes it annoying. I have been highly upset, but I have never had thoughts about transferring."
Another factor contributing to the dissatisfaction with customer service at PVAMU is attitude. It can become challenging to keep a positive attitude throughout the work day, but it is a challenge to overcome. When it comes to customer service, negative attitudes can change the atmosphere of the environment.
Sharmin Glasco-Wilson, a senior health administration major, said, "Housing's customer service, can improve on their attitudes. I think they can assist students in a calmly manner instead of getting a little hostile."
With the number of students growing larger and larger each school year, many believe the main solution is to hire more staff to accommodate everyone in an appropriate manner. To help with attitude skills, few think special training would suffice.
"They can go to seminars on how to deal with customers or students when it comes to assisting them with their problems. As far as transferring, I do not think leaving the problem will solve the problem. It is worse in the real world, you just have to deal," said Glasco-Wilson.

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