Students reported mold growing on the ceiling of the main floor of the Village B Residence Hall Common Room in September as well as in the bathrooms of Village C Residence Hall, according to Assistant Dean for Student Affairs Timothy Touchette, these issues have since been addressed.
“There was mold in the ceiling on the main level of Village B that was isolated to some insulation on some of the pipes,” said Touchette in an email interview with The Brandeis Hoot. “The insulation has been removed.”
Despite this mold having been reported last month, Touchette said it is unknown how long it had been present.
As for the Village C mold, some of the exhaust fans were found to have been tripped, according to Touchette’s email. “This has since been fixed and the area was cleaned by the Housekeeping team,” Touchette said.
Touchette says that Facilities Administration and Department of Environmental Health & Safety helped provide him with the information concerning both the growth of the mold and the campus’s response to it.
Mold has been a recurring issue at Brandeis, according to a previous Hoot article, as there have been other instances of it being reported. In 2019, some students claimed to have seen it growing in Deroy Hall, according to another previous Hoot article. Some considered it a safety hazard, and a few students who fell ill around the time of the growth of the mold stated that said mold may have been a factor in their sickness. A parent of one of the hall’s residents may have considered legal action at one point, according to the previous article. Despite this, area coordinators did not locate any mold and found that the humidity levels were not those in which mold could easily grow.
In 2010, a ceiling in a Schwartz Hall dorm room partially caved due in part to the growth of mold; no one was in the room at the time, according to a Hoot archives article from 2010. That same year, the campus faced a mold problem because of water damage related to flooding, according to another archived article.
Touchette emphasizes the importance of watching out for mold growth on campus. While there is nothing in particular students themselves can do to prevent mold or address the issue if they notice it, they must contact facilities.
Touchette said that “if residents see moisture marks or anything that looks like mold, please report it to Facilities by calling (781) 736-8500 or placing an online work order as soon as possible.”
The mold in the Village was quickly taken care of and did not physically affect any students or cause structural damage, said Touchette. By taking the above actions, it serves as preventative measures to ensure that issues like these do not get out of hand in the future, according to Touchette.