At least 220 '04s remain homeless

by Alison Schmauch | 5/30/01 5:00am

Preliminary numbers released by the Office of Residential Life indicate that approximately 220 rising sophomores are currently on the wait list for on-campus housing next fall.

Lynn Rosenblum, director of on-campus housing, said that fewer students are on the wait list now than were at this time last year, when 241 sophomores were on the wait list for housing.

While more students may request to be placed on the wait list before May 31, Rosenblum anticipates that the total number of students who will request to be placed on the wait list before the deadline will be under 250.

Members of the Class of 2004 placed on the wait list who spoke with The Dartmouth expressed varied feelings about the overall room draw process.

Greta Milligan '04 was not particularly concerned about eventually obtaining housing next year.

"I'm not really that worried out about it. I'm pretty sure that I'll get housing," she said.

However, she added that "the process was just kind of annoying in general. It seems more stressful than necessary."

Amanda Behm '04 was frustrated with the way the new practice of "squatting" complicated this year's room draw.

While Behm had a "decent" number, she lived in New Hampshire Hall this year, which does not allow squatters.

"Because so many sophomores squatted, they jumped ahead in priority and others, like myself, have no housing," she explained. "It hardly seems fair that some '04s are guaranteed great housing simply because of the lucky room assignments they had this year."

"I know that squatting was implemented to try to preserve a sense of community in some dorms," she said, "but it hardly helps the overall sense of campus community if so many sophomores are left without housing."

Administrators in the ORL office found that room draw generally went more smoothly this year than last year.

Dean of Residential Life Martin Redman said that ORL was better able to anticipate how many students would show up during each time slot.

For example, when ORL ran a room draw for the first time last year, they did not take into account that a group of students who wanted to room together would draw with the highest priority number in the group.

Rosenblum noted that no student had to wait more than an hour and 15 minutes at Leede Arena this year.

Rosenblum and Redman both said that the discontinuation of "blocking" or "grouping", which allowed groups of up to eight students to draw for multiple rooms using the highest number in the group, also simplified the room draw process.

Rosenblum said that ORL has received relatively few complaints about the overall process over the past few weeks.

A total of 130 students took advantage of the "squatting" option this year according to the ORL.