WEB EXTRA: 200 left on housing wait list

A few hundred students are still without housing assignments for next year and may not get an answer until the end of the semester, University Campus Housing Director Seth Weinshel said.

There are still about 200 students left on the guaranteed and non-guaranteed waitlists combined, Weinshel said in an interview. Students selected housing more than a month ago. Last year at this time there were about 300 students without housing.

“We have enough beds for every student,” Weinshel said. “It is just a matter of getting them in the room that they want.”

The guaranteed waitlist is for first- and second-year students who are required to live on campus, and the non-guaranteed is for third- and fourth-year students who may live off campus if they are not assigned an on-campus room. There is also a separate “room swap” list available only to students who already have signed up for housing but want different rooms, Weinshel said.

Despite rumors circulating that there was a “housing shortage” after sophomores registered more than a month ago, Weinshel said that kind of speculation is not accurate. The reason there were not as many beds left during the online process is because even if someone does not accept a room that they signed up for, that spot is no longer available online, he said. Weinshel said the online process is only meant to accommodate 85 percent of students.

Weinshel said Community Living and Learning Center staff is working to put students from the waitlist into the rooms of their preference when possible. The waitlist is being filled in order of a student’s intent-to-return form number instead of on a first-come, first-serve basis as in the past. Weinshel also said CLLC has been looking at room-size preferences while also trying to keep roommate groups together.

“We’re going to do everything we can to try to meet people’s requirements,” he said, but added that in some cases this just isn’t possible. For instance, he said 37 people on the non-guaranteed waitlist have indicated that they only want a single, but the University only has a limited number of single rooms, so all these people may not be able to be accommodated accordingly.

CLLC decided to change the housing selection process this year so that each class had its own pool of dorms to choose from, following complaints last year from juniors who shared a pool of dorms with seniors. The new class-specific pools rearranged the dorms from which each class selected and were meant to give each grade fairer options for housing.

Weinshel said he believes that all the changes made to the housing process this year worked successfully, and he said that some complaints were expected.

“The first year you change something you always get feedback from a class that feels like they were given the short end of the stick, but they really weren’t,” he said.

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