IN a bid to keep up with technology, the government is donating computers to schools and institutes across the country. This is a very good way forward because computers are getting to be really essential in our day-to-day activities.
However, it’s a big shame that t
he authorities of such a well-known institute like the Harare Polytechnic think otherwise.
Students are being barred from bringing in their personal computers to the hostels. If a student is found with one he/she risks being cautioned or even losing accommodation at the hostels, which is a sad thing considering the world of technology that we are living in.
In one instance a student who had brought his personal computer from as far as Bulawayo was denied entrance at the main gate and was told to get rid of the computer if he still wanted to reside at the hostels.
Other students are even made to leave their valuable computers in the college’s unsafe guardrooms until they manage to find a place outside the college where they can leave their computers.
Of course the administration argues that there is no need for personal computers since the college has its own computers. But the fact is that the computers are just not enough for the students who count up to about 8 000 and almost all of them have to sit for a computer practical exam at some point as part of their courses.
For example, the IT department has about 120 students yet the department’s lab has less than 25 working computers.
The business studies department students and some staff who are training for their ICDL qualifications also use that same lab. This only proves how inadequate the computers at the college are.
After all, gadgets like radios, TVs, DVD players and home theatres are allowed. So why not computers?
We are kindly asking the Minister of Higher and Tertiary Education to help the desperate students because if a student can afford to bring a personal computer it would benefit a number of other students who cannot afford and thereby reduce the congestion at the college’s computer labs.
Lecturers are even failing to print notes and assignment papers for their students because of lack of computer consumables — ie toner and ink. If the students are allowed to bring their computers they will only need soft copies to download to their computers and thereby improve the learning process at the college.
Why can’t it be like it is at other tertiary colleges? Viva technology!