Fact: college enrollment is expected to rise over the next couple years in the US.
This increase will also go into effect at Dominican. According to Residence Life, there will be sixty additional on campus residents attending Dominican by the fall of 2009. However, because the dorms are currently at full capacity, Dominican will be short on-campus housing for 60 students.
"The misconception going around is that 60 students won't have housing," said Residence Life Coordinator Anthony Gagliano. "That is not the case. We will provide some kind of housing for these students, but it will have to be at an off campus location.”
Even with the opening of Bon Villa and Mazzecheli Hall this year and the additional space for students at the Priory, there still won’t be enough space for all of thr students who want on campus housing next fall.
According to Gagliano, Dominican is looking into either buying or renting an additional apartment building where 15-20 students could live together. Residence Life is currently looking into ideas to solve the problem of unfurnished apartments, transportation issues and meal plans for off campus students. “We are taking all of these into consideration,” said Gagliano.
As Residence Life looks into finding additional housing opportunities for students, they are also trying to figure out the fairest way to divvy up the dorms that are available on campus.
“The reality is that freshmen will not be moved off campus,” he said. “It will be the sophomores and upperclassmen who will get affected the most." One option that Residence Life has considered is using a lottery housing system. However, the problem with the lottery is that seniors and juniors would have first choice for rooms on campus, which would be unfair to the sophomore class.
Another option is dividing it up evenly so that 20 students from each of the upper classes will be turned down housing on main campus.
“We’re trying to figure out the fairest way to do this,” Gagliano said, “but the reality is we’re growing.”
The housing crunch is a work in progress, and one that Domininet will be following up on throughout the remainder the year.