DUT TO BOOST ITS ACCOMODATION FACILITIES
By: Tony Manyangadze
The Durban University of Technology (DUT), by end of 2014, will be able to accommodate an additional 800 students upon the completion of its still under construction state of the art resident hall.
Head of Housing at the institution, Theophilus Nhassengo confirmed and exclusively told JournalismIziko that this new building will house 800 beds adding to the already existing 1560 beds located on and off campus that belong to DUT.
It is sad to note that despite this huge transformation, the issue of student accommodation is not going to disappear. The shortage of students’ accommodation has been a burning issue not only at DUT but most tertiary learning institutions across the country.
Unfortunately this project is highly likely to be the last project DUT will be involved in because the institution no longer has land to erect other buildings to house all of its learners that require residences.
Nhassengo noted that as for the coming year, the institution will, like always, acquire privately owned residences to cater for the students who cannot be accommodated in the resident halls that belong to the institution.
“As is the requirement by the Department of Higher Education and the funding provisions by NSFAS, it is expected that DUT would assist in accrediting suitable private accommodation to which students who cannot be accommodated by the institutions can be referred to, and NSFAS arranges payment directly with the landlord or through the institution,” said Nhassengo.
The students at the institution have expressed mixed feelings. Tinashe Chikwanha, a 3rd Year Marketing Management student said, “For the three years I have been at DUT, many students have not been able to get proper accommodation this resulted in them incurring costs of transporting everyday from home. So I welcome the construction of this new residence. I think that’s a good investment of DUT finances.”
Amanda Lushaba, a final year Financial Information Systems student at the institution, echoed similar sentiments. “This building will be useful and will allow students access to university facilities like the library and the Wi-Fi much easily,” said Lushaba.
“I would have liked for DUT to have its own residents by 2015 and do away with outsourcing,” she added.
Mondli Phewa, who runs a cafeteria just close to where the new residence is being constructed is looking forward to more business and like most, he cannot wait for January 2015 when the building is ready for occupation.
“I understand this new building is going to accommodate more students and for us, it’s good news. We are hoping once its operational, we will have more customers,” said Phewa.