Demand excellence from the administration

What’s the difference between the annual summer exam timetables and the daily timetable of lectures? One very rarely has any errors, and the other often does.

Clearly Trinity has the right people and the resources to produce an accurate timetable for the exam period. Why, then, isn’t there an accurate daily timetable?

One reason is that, as students, we don’t tolerate mistakes in the exam timetable. It is too important. We expect the exam timetable to be accurate, and so there is an implicit agreement between us and the administrators who serve us that they will do their job to a high standard.

Sadly, for the daily timetable and countless other bureaucratic services, this agreement on high standards does not exist, implicitly or otherwise. It’s time to make it explicit.

Next time your timetable is wrong, ask why. When a tutorial clashes with a lecture, or when you’re supposed to get from Goldsmith Hall to the Edmund Burke in ten minutes, ask why. Ask why your lecture notes are available as twelve separate 50 MB PowerPoint files from last year rather than one up-to-date PDF. Ask why your assignment, handed in on time, hasn’t been returned to you on time.

Our teachers demand high standards of us. It is part of what makes this university the best in the country. Any student who were to use words as inefficiently and opaquely as Peter Hynes in the Student Records Office and Paul Coote in the Treasurer’s Office did in their email of 7 January about re-registration – 413 words just to say, “You don’t need to do anything” – would be told to resubmit.

We expect and demand that the administrators who serve us do so with a consistently high standard. If they don’t meet this standard, knock on their door and remind them – it is your right and your duty.