Students adjust to stricter single room fees

By Courtney Olson

Members of Wright Hall search for a room at this year's room draw. (Photo by Courtney Olson)

Members of Wright Hall search for a room at this year’s room draw. (Photo by Courtney Olson)

As of the 2014-2015 academic school year, students will no longer get by without having a roommate to live with, unless willing to pay an extra fee.

“HU is a residential community where students are exposed to a variety of people and experiences through relationships,” Jesse Brown, associate dean of student development, said. “Residence Life is a place where students learn from one another and live with one another.”

Brown said that because of this, students who do not have a roommate will be paired with one before the new school year begins.

Some students, however, have concerns with this new mandate.

Hilary Lanman, a junior worship leadership major, is required to go on PRIME, which involves being off-campus for one semester. Being a Hardy Hall resident, she is hoping to stay in Hardy.

“I just feel like since I’m doing a school internship that is required by the school for my major,” Lanman said, “I should be secure in the fact that when I come back I should be able to come back to the floor that I have spent three years on.”

Her roommate, Kaylin Yon, sophomore, was forced with the decision to pay the additional fee or find a roommate for fall semester until Lanman returns in the spring.

“I just thought that I would room with Hilary second semester after she came back, like they’ve done in the past, “ Yon said, “I didn’t think it would affect anything, but it did.”

After thinking the situation over, Lanman agreed that Yon should find a roommate for the fall semester, making it easier on them both financially.

“I’m happy with the way things turned out,” Yon said. “Hilary and I would’ve split the money, and it wouldn’t of been fair to her because she’s not even going to be here [in the fall].”

Brown said that it has always been a rule that the university will not hold a space open for the PRIME students until they come back.

“I respect and understand room and board for doing what they need to do,” Lanman said. “After I put things into prospective, it doesn’t make much sense to pay the extra fee when there will most likely be a room available when I get back.”

There are indeed benefits to this — the first one being that it will require less fix-up over the summer, Brown said.

“[Maintenance and our staff] worked hard this past summer to paint and repair the residence halls,” he said. “ If we can prevent some wear-and-tear in the residence halls, we will have less damage to repair over the summer.”

Another benefit is that it will save money, along with helping with consistency amongst single rooms available for those who need them under certain circumstances, such as medical reasons.

The biggest concern that Brown has heard is that students are worried about paying a fee if their roommate leaves. A student will be paired with someone else to dodge the fee, if this situation occurs, he said.

“We have some limitations because, eventually, we will have no available rooms in a specific residence hall or floor, but we will work diligently to honor the requests that students make,” Brown said.

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