Old, dilapidated university dormitories in Hà Nội are in dire need of renovation

November, 12/2022 - 07:53

The Ministry of Education and Training is developing standards for higher education institutions, including that dormitories and facilities must comply with regulations and provide accommodation for at least 25 per cent of the total students.

A cracked wall in a dormitory of Hà Nội University of Transport in Hà Nội. — Photo tienphong.vn

HÀ NỘI — Many university dormitories in Hà Nội are old and dilapidated, with students sharing tiny spaces that are in desperate need of refurbishment. 

T.T.X.T, a first-year student of Hà Nội University of Home Affairs, said she decided to stay at the school's dormitory when she accepted an offer to study there this year. 

"However, life in the dormitory is not what I imagined," she said.

The dormitory rooms are narrow. Eight students share a room and only have access to one toilet, she said.

The corridor is narrow, though it is often blocked with clothes hung out to dry. 

"We have no other space to dry our clothes," she said.

She added that it costs about VNĐ250,000 (US$10) to stay at the dormitory each month, excluding VNĐ40,000 ($1.60) for electricity and water bills.

She hopes the dormitory will be upgraded so that students living there can live more conveniently.

N.T.M, a Hà Nội University of Culture student, said she has lived in the school's dormitory for nearly four years.

The room she and nine other students shared is only 14 sq.m, she said.

"Even though the furniture is arranged neatly, there is still not enough space to live in," she said.

Moreover, the walls have many cracks, and the ceiling is mouldy.

Although living in the dormitory is uncomfortable, N.T.M and her friends can not go anywhere else because she said the cost of living in Hà Nội is prohibitive.

"If you rent a room outside the dormitory, the cost of living each month will be up to 10 times higher," she said.

N.T.M said there are also university dormitories in the suburbs, but they are too far away.

She hopes the dormitory will be upgraded so students can live in more comfortable surroundings. 

N.T.H is a student at Hà Nội University of Transport. Its domitories were built in the 1970s. N.T.H said her room is about 30 sq.m, which she shares with six other students. 

H said all her clothes, possessions, and books are on a 2.6-sq.m bed.

She said it costs about VNĐ120,000 ($4.80) to stay at the dormitory each month.

Insufficient funds

Nguyễn Thanh Chương, Vice Principal of Hà Nội University of Transport, spoke to Tiền Phong (Vanguard) online newspaper about the school's dormitory, which is home to 1,700 students. Five buildings are in the dormitory area, including two that have been repaired.

The Ministry of Education and Training provided the funding for the repairs.

Chương said the school has no funding to rebuild its dormitories and cannot call for private sector support as the school is not under the mechanism of financial autonomy.

The current fee of VNĐ120,000 ($4.80) per month for each student is a reasonable price to make the accommodation accessible to all, he said.

He added that the fee is not enough to cover the dormitories running costs. 

The Ministry of Education and Training is developing standards for higher education institutions, including that dormitories and facilities must comply with regulations and provide accommodation for at least 25 per cent of the total students.

In 2015, the Prime Minister issued Decision No. 130 on measures and a roadmap for relocating industrial production establishments, hospitals, higher education institutions, vocational education and State agencies in the inner city of Hà Nội.

However, the progress in implementing the resolution has been slow so far.

Architect Phạm Thanh Tùng, Chief of the Việt Nam Association of Architects' Office, said when factories and universities are moved to the suburbs, it is necessary to support these units to operate stably.

He said that higher education institutions have to provide student accommodation and ensure that the area is convenient for traffic, safe and attractive.

He said that it is advised to speed up the traffic connection so that students can go by bus from the school gate. — VNS

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