Web unfit for housing

When students log on to GWeb Feb. 24 to choose housing for next year, they might not be able to pick the exact room they want, GW officials told the Residence Hall Association Friday.

RHA President Noel Frame said Housing Services Director Andrew Sonn told her Friday that BannerWeb will only allow students to select a room size and building and not specific rooms.

The RHA plans to propose a resolution that would bring the housing selection process back to its live version in J Street rather than the currently planned online selection if the University is unable to change the format of the online program.

“The University is choosing technology at the expense of student choice, and that is unacceptable,” Frame said.

Frame said there are several different room setups in each building and that students need to know exactly what room they are getting.

“If you are going to get an apartment in the Statesman, you wouldn’t sign a lease if all you knew was that you were getting a two bedroom,” Frame said.

Frame cited the New Hall quads ending in 06 and 04 are examples of rooms that hold the same number of students but are arranged very differently.

“They are totally different rooms,” Frame said.

She said the University proposed a similar system in November.

“The University was really gung-ho about doing it online, and they had everything developed,” Frame said.

The University wanted to deal with all students the same way it deals with freshmen by having students state their preference and then placing them accordingly, Frame said.

She said the RHA strongly opposed this format. The University then developed the “quasi-live” selection process with 25 lottery numbers every 15 minutes.

Frame said she was under the impression students would be able to choose the exact room they wanted.

“The goal of going to the online process was to make it less stressful and more convenient for students, and as it stands it does not accomplish that,” she said.

Frame said the RHA members offered their disapproval for the incomplete internet system to Sonn on Friday.

She said the RHA plans to propose a resolution Monday to move the process back to J Street if the online system is not changed by the end of week.

Students agreed with Frame and said they would rather be able to choose their room using previous years’ selection process.

“It would be worthwhile to have live housing selection, instead of being locked into a system where we don’t have choices,” freshman Adela Maskova said.

She said she would rather go to J Street and wait in lines if it meant she could choose an exact room.

Sophomores Todd Hadley and Darius Rafiei said they would rather use a live process.

“I would rather do it in J Street,” Rafiei said.

Hadley said he took part in the process at J Street last year and felt it ran smoothly.

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