I am a doctoral student at a premier institute which is also a hospital. Most of the administrative positions are handled by professors who are also clinicians and researchers. Sad as it might be, there are a lot of things for which the bar is quite low. Three specific examples:
- the cafeteria on campus has absolutely rock-bottom level of quality/hygiene standard
- similar low standard when it comes to maintenance of washrooms etc.
- impossibly poor standards of on-campus residences
These are usually taken care of by administrative staff but at the end of the day are under administrative control of one or the other faculty (honorary "in-charges"). Not only these set a very poor impression when we have visitors but it also lowers the morale of the research staff. Sustained exposure to such a pathetic environment impairs productivity and there is always a prevalent air of gloom among students on the campus. Somehow it seems that the administrators are not interested in remedying any such situation and things seem to have become worse in the recent years.
Is it potentially harmful* for students to send formal complaints to the administrators requesting action to be taken? In case the administrator does nothing, should it be sent higher up in the hierarchy? How should attention be brought to such things so that they are resolved?
*harmful in terms of being bullied by senior faculties in the future; having carrier plans blocked because the same faculties might be on your review committees, et al
What I have tried to do:
I have sent anonymous emails to which I have either not received any reply or else have received a reply explicitly asking me to disclose my identity. In either case, complaints have never been worked on. I have tried to speak to my advisor about this but he has never been encouraging about the idea of formally writing complaints because of similar concerns mentioned above.