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SFU Surrey Document Solution Office Can't Solve Traffic Issue
yjang | March 11, 2009 at 09:47 pmby
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The Document Solution office offers both students and the faculty fine 2-D printing jobs for projects, exams, and promotional items such as posters and even t-shirts. I myself have made several stops at the place to print copies for my design assignments, and boy, did I feel grateful every time. It's not just because it saves me any trips down to Staples. The staff there is nice and helpful, and given that you prepped your document in the desired format and resolution, the prints come out quickly and nicely most of the time. It is hard to complain about their services. When it's a cut-off day for an IAT assignment, however, the story changes.
It's not uncommon for the hallway next to the office to get clogged whenever there is an IAT assignment due. The students begin lining up for print jobs around ten o'clock in the morning, and then in half an hour, the hallway has a blockade with the laptop- or memory-stick holding, anxious-looking students, spilling out of the small office and cutting off the people trying to get to their next lecture.
This Tuesday was no exception, as it was the day for my first-year IAT class to present label and packaging designs for cylindrical products. I was in the line-up for twenty minutes or so in the afternoon, channeling my frustration through a glare at whoever getting their turn to print as people bumped into me as they struggled to go to the theatre. As I made it past the doorstep, a lady squeezed in and exclaimed to the staff, "Why don't you put out chairs in the hallway?", to which he replied, "I don't want [people] to hang around when they don't need to." Other passer-bys often gave sympathetic looks to him as their eyes met, shaking their heads and muttering, "IAT, huh?"
As I left the office, with glossy fake beer can labels in my hands and the exhausted smile on the staff's face behind my back, I wondered how many times the office has gone through such chaos since the campus opened in 2002. It probably experiences them every semester, as IAT programs have been offered from the opening. I then wondered if the school ever considered giving the office a bigger room, perhaps a waiting area. It should have, given all the design and art related courses it provides. Even setting up chairs alongside the office as the lady suggested, or even just queue stands, would make things way better. The line-up would be much more organized and give rooms for passer-bys. The office could also use more than one staff members at a time, at least for the IAT rush hours. The line gets delayed with students trying to figure out which printer to select, and the staff guy has to push his ways from manning the printers to help out the students constantly.
The traffic problem with the SFU Surrey Document Solution office is plainly and painfully visible to anyone who frequently uses the hallway towards the lecture theatre, and it has been for the last six years. With solutions just as obvious and plain, it really is a wonder why it should continues.
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