For most university students, the most challenging issue facing them is not the pile of assignments their lecturers give them to do, it is also neither the volume of books they have to read to gain the knowledge nor the tough exams they have to face at the end of the semester. For them, finding a suitable accommodation is the most challenging aspect.
Staying in campus is the best comfortable way for a university student to concentrate on books. However, with the increase in enrolment in universities that do not correspond to the expansion of physical infrastructures such as hostels, most students have found themselves living off campus, a situation that to some extent poses a big challenge in their endeavour to learn and earn their degrees with flying colours.
Kumbusho Kagine, a member of University Students Representative Council (USRC)-DARUSO from the University of Dar es Salaam, said despite the efforts to expand accommodation facilities for students, still the shortage is huge.
“Despite new hostels built in our campus, accommodation for students is still a challenge,” he told Success Magazine, citing the high enrolment rate as the reason for the shortage.
“The problem is due to the high number of students enrolled, for example the 2017/18 academic year, 10,800 students have been enrolled at the University of Dar es Salaam,” he said.
According to Kumbusho, hostel facilities at Udsm can accommodate some 9,982 students only. “The newly built hostel along Sam Nujoma Road has a capacity to accommodate 3,840 students while Mabibo Hostel can accommodate 4,342 students and 1,800 students can settle at the main campus,” he noted, saying accommodation facilities cannot cope with the admission of between 20,000 and 25,000 students, leaving about 13,000 students with no other alternative than renting houses and rooms outside their college campus.
According to him, approximately 60 per cent of students at the university face accommodation challenges. Kumbusho is of the opinion that shortage of accommodation facilities coupled with the delays in allocation and disbursement of students’ loans make life a living hell for students.
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Article written by Elizabeth Tungaraza
By the Citizen