Rise in Freshmen Numbers Causes Housing Re-adjustments

Sarah Manderbach '22, Opinion Editor

Residence Life and Housing must rearrange previously determined housing assignments after a surge in incoming freshmen for the class of 2025.

An email was sent from the Residence Life and Housing (ResLife) office to select students on July 16 stating that they will now have to be placed in four-person suites instead of their prior assignments from the housing lottery. This email was sent out to upperclassmen who chose housing in Spradley-Young (previously Cooper), Atwater, and Conway Halls, as the space is needed for incoming first-year students. The solution for this predicament is to match (students) with suitemates and move them from their current housing assignments to upper-classmen buildings, including Morgan Hall, Malcolm Hall, or Witwer Hall. ResLife hopes to have these adjusted housing arrangements assigned by August 1. 

Angie Harris, the Associate Vice President for Student Life, said that this is a typical situation for ResLife. “Depending on the number of students able to match into four person groups, we typically have to open up some flex space during the room selection process for rising sophomores. There are a few more students in this group this year,” Harris stated.

Harris also said that there was a large number of four person suites available after the housing lottery process this year. “We do have space to match these students into groups and give them the opportunity to live in a suite rather than what is typically first-year housing.”

Spradley-Young Hall is considered a flex space by Res Life, as “it has gone back and forth between first-year and returning student housing. With the size of the first-year class, it will be first-year housing this year.”

“We typically open up for roommate pairs to select a space and then move them as needed,” Harris said about the new moving process. She also said that this would have happened earlier, but “since room selection was delayed this year, (ResLife was) also delayed in making these adjustments.” The ResLife office will also be using the roommate preference information to make the matches “as positive as possible.”

This information was known since room selection, specifically “after sophomores selected on June 17.”

Students impacted by this adjustment by ResLife have mixed feelings. Amna Fayyaz ‘24 was looking forward to a double with a teammate before the decision. She highlighted that suddenly having to find more people to room with is stressful. I probably am going to go for Morgan with another teammate but it would’ve been so much easier and better if we stayed where we were. Dickinson should’ve sorted out housing way before the summer.”

Laman Huseynova ‘24 is also not a fan of living in a suite and wants to stick to one roommate. Being put in a suite without asking was very confusing to me and that email itself just seemed so unprofessional from the college. My roommate and I don’t really like the dorms we are offered now. To be honest, we both don’t mind moving dorms, but we still don’t feel very happy about living with two more people in a suite.”

Lili Gittines ‘24 is annoyed that after hours of coordinating with friends, they will no longer be able to live together. Now, my roommate and I, who planned on having a regular double room, are being forced to move to a suite in the upper quads, away from our friends. It’s quite irritating to be told that the housing you were guaranteed a few weeks ago is no longer available because they need it for first years. Why did Res Life offer these residence halls to sophomores when they knew the freshman enrollment size for the incoming class? Though I am grateful that there will be housing made available to me, this is certainly not ideal for many students including myself.”

Harris said that she hopes that this is a positive change for the class of 2024. “Many already shared via email or the waitlist that they were hoping to be in a suite but were unable to match with another roommate pair. The suites should give them a little more space than a double room on a corridor.”