Administration Explains Housing Selection

By MANYI ENO

News Editor, Interim EIC

It’s that time of year again. it is time to find a roommate and decide where you want to live.

On March 6, an email was sent to students about housing selection for the upcoming 2015-2016 academic school year from Director of Residential Education Mark Jestel. 

In an interview with Jestel, he explained that the housing selection process will be handled similar to last year.

“Students will be assigned a time that they can come to the student center to choose their rooms, and it will take about five minutes,” said Jestel. 

He said this process has proved to run smoother than it has in previous years. 

Students used to have to wait in long lines to get the rooms they wanted, waking up as early as 4 a.m. to be guaranteed the room they wanted. 

“What also helps the process go faster is if students already know the residence hall and room they want before they come to their selected time,” he said. 

In the email, Jestel said that selection times will be based off of the number of credit hours completed each student has as of January of 2015, and times will be emailed to students by March 23. 

When students go to the student center to sign up for their room, there will be a screen on the wall, mapping out the dorm they want and the room they prefer. 

If seniors want to room with a friend who has fewer credit hours than them, that senior can still request that friend as a roommate choice regardless of hours. 

However, if there is a difference of more than 60 credit hours between friends wanting to room together, the selection request will be placed at the end of the senior selection times to ensure all other seniors have priority, Jestel explained. For example, seniors will select their room before a rising sophomore. 

“There will be an open house for when students want to tour the residence halls they want to live in, and I will be sending out an email about that later,” said Jestel. 

On March 2, Dean of Student Engagement and Director of Career and Personal Counseling Emily Pettit sent an email to students who qualify to apply for housing in the new student village. 

“You are receiving this email because you meet the 60+ credit hours completed by January 1, 2015, and have a cumulative GPA of 3.0 or higher to qualify to live in the Village,” the email read. 

Jestel added that students who qualify for the Village must also be in good judicial standing with the school. 

“With more independence, comes more responsibility,” said Jestel. 

He explained that if a student had a visitation or health-and-safety violation, those are examples of minor infractions that would not necessarily put the student in bad judicial standing. 

However, some students were concerned about the cost of the Village, whether it would cost more or less. 

According to the tuition/room and board costs listed on the school website, on-campus housing costs $5,032 per academic year whereas to live in the Village will cost $6,048 per academic year. 

Although students on the main campus are required to have a meal plan, they will also be required to have one in the Village. 

In addition to the meal plans, students who live in the Village will also be provided with a declining balance, which can be used at the Grill, Cyber Café and in the dining hall. The Cyber Café will be a 24-hour cafeteria equiped with WiFi and food like sandwiches and drinks.

Although, Jestel explained that it has not been announced when the restaurants in the Village will be available. 

In the Village suites, utilities will be included. The suites will have four bedrooms, two bathrooms, a convention stovetop and a washer and dryer. 

As for policies, Jestel said that the Village will have open visitation 24/7, but the school’s current alcohol and pet policies still apply. 

Whether the Village will have Resident Assistants (RA) is a topic administration is still discussing.

“Currently, the residential living staff has not been selected or placed for the village, but there will be a Resident Director as well as support staff present,” said Jestel.  

To apply for the Village is on a first-come-first-served basis, and as of now, 30 students have officially applied, said Jestel. 

Although there are four rooms per suite, students will not be denied access to a suite if they do not have four people. 

“We will never turn people down if they do not have enough people,” said Jestel. “We do have a couple of applicants who don’t care who they live with just as long as they get to live there.”