CMC renovations disrupt classes, displace student orgs
■ Rat San Juan
Ongoing renovations in the main building of the College of Mass Communication (CMC) interrupted at least 50 classes, more than half of which are Journalism classes which have all been postponed until August 14.
A total of 30 Journalism classes and other CMC subjects held in classrooms under the department will only start on Monday. Meanwhile, at least 20 Broadcast Communication (BC) classes have been moved to the UP Film Institute Media Center building beside Plaridel Hall, but 10 still use the rooms in the main building despite the unfinished construction.
The building makeover is long overdue, said Administrative Officer Gina Villegas. Under the Office of the Campus Architect (OCA), the modernization project had been planned since the term of former CMC Dean Roland Tolentino which ended in 2015.
“Sa dami ng project sa buong UP Diliman, ngayon lang natapos yung bidding,” Villegas said.
Expected to be completed in October, the renovated CMC main building will have new floorings, transparent glass walls, glass boards in classrooms and full air-conditioning in both floors.
Electrical rewiring of the main building is also among the targets of the renovation, according to CMC College Secretary Teresa Congjuico. Previous renovations in the college focused only on refurbishing either the interior or exterior.
The faculty meanwhile looks forward to the renovated rooms but the downside is having to scout for temporary rooms and ensure the safety of students, said professor Eulalio R. Guieb III, chair of the BC department.
“As much as possible, we avoid using rooms that are very well within the premises of the construction. Still, because of the lack of rooms, we advised some of them to use those rooms [near the renovation],” Guieb added.
Aside from delaying and relocating classes, the renovations have also displaced the CMC Student Council (CMCSC), the college’s official student publication Tinig ng Plaridel and four other organizations based at the CMC Annex building basement which includes the UP Broadcasters’ Guild, Student Alliance for the Advancement of Democratic Rights in UP CMC (STAND UP CMC), Anakbayan Mass Communication (ABMC) and the Union of Journalists of the Philippines-UP (UJP-UP).
The entire basement room containing their vacated office space will be repurposed as the new Office of Extension and External Relations (OEER) which has long requested for a larger working area to the CMC admin. The OEER annually confers the UP Gawad Plaridel to outstanding media practitioners.
While several student formations will be displaced, only the CMCSC and TNP were given relocation space at a different portion of the basement. The other four organizations through the CMCSC have requested a dialogue with the admin to raise their concerns.
One of the solutions being proposed by the admin is to provide old couches near the basement entrance to serve a free-for-all org tambayan, said Villegas.
The loss of the tambayan came as a big blow, according to ABMC Membership Head Abigail Zara. “Doon kami nakakapag-discuss tungkol sa mga issues. Naging lugar siya hindi lang sa pag-develop ng bond bilang isang org, [kundi] bilang isang family,” she added.
The writer of the article is a member of UJP-UP, among the organizations to be displaced. ■
Short URL: http://www.philippinecollegian.org/?p=12165