With more than 600 students placed on the housing waitlist for the 2014-15 school year, Rowan officials have decided to triple rooms in Edgewood Park Apartments in an effort to accommodate as many of those students as possible.
Tripling rooms will allow up to 95 wait-listed students to receive housing, Director of Residential Learning and University Housing Travis Douglas said. The apartments will house up to five students, with one bedroom being tripled and the other remaining a standard two-person room.
“One of the two bedrooms has things like fire alarms and sprinkler heads that wouldn’t make it work [as a triple],” Douglas said. “I think also tripling both rooms and having six people in there would be too much crowding in an apartment that’s designed for less people.”
Edgewood Park Apartments were chosen to be tripled over the other apartment complexes because they are the only rooms that are large enough to hold the extra furniture. The rooms have to be large enough to accommodate a lofted bed and an added dresser, desk and chair for the third student. Douglas said that rooms in the Triad Apartments are too narrow, and the Townhouses, Rowan Boulevard and Whitney Center rooms are all designed for single-person occupancy.
Tripled students will have $500 applied to their fall bill at the start of the semester, and if students remain in the tripled room for the entire semester, they will get another $500 toward their spring bill, Douglas said.
Douglas said that the decision to triple rooms came after students expressed concerns about the housing process. Junior writing arts major Hope Oberwanowicz started a housing petition on change.org to protest housing after 634 students were wait-listed. The petition received over 1,000 signatures in its first two days.
Since the initial 634 students were wait-listed, Douglas said that another 100 students have applied for housing and were also wait-listed. Overall, the waitlist is down to 450 students after tripling rooms and students choosing to live off-campus.
“We received feedback from a lot of students that felt that [tripling the rooms] was reasonable, as opposed to not having access to housing,” Douglas said.
He knows tripling rooms is not necessarily popular among students, but it is necessary in order to house as many students as possible.
“We also know that there’s going to be some students that are not happy about that choice but we have to try to balance the needs of all the students,” Douglas said.
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