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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


Some students still housed in temporary dorm spaces

There are still 120 students living in temporary dormitory housing, and Residence Life officials say they don’t expect the situation to improve by next year.

Due to lack of space at the beginning of the semester, Residence Life boarded students with resident assistants and converted both study rooms and the Alpha Chi Omega sorority house into temporary housing. Nearly 300 students were placed in alternate housing.

Jim Van Arsdel, director of Residence Life and University Housing, said his team has been chipping away at the number by placing some students in permanent housing, but that it’s been a slow process.

“”We have made significant progress,”” Van Arsdel said. “”The reason why we haven’t been able to move more quickly is that more people have not been moving out — so I guess that is the good news in all of this.””

Faith Flynn, an undecided freshman, said she actually prefers living in her temporary housing assignment to moving midway through the semester.

“”I would actually rather stay here for the rest of the year rather than dealing with moving, a new roommate and a new location on campus,”” Flynn said. “”I actually really like where I live.””

Residence Life said it expects the same housing deficit for next year, with the combined spike in enrollment and thinning of resources, so it is trying to make the situation as appealing and fair as possible. Residence Life officials said the temporary housing rooms are actually larger than typical dorm rooms and students are charged the lowest possible rate.

Van Arsdel said the two new dorms going up near Sixth Street would take a lot of the weight off of Residence Life’s shoulders if they were completed and available this year, but that is not going to be the case. Together, the new halls will house 1,088 students.

However, they won’t open until the fall of 2011.

“”By the time they are done, I expect that our enrollment will have gone up, so we will be facing the same situation,”” Van Arsdel said. 

Even with the budget issues the UA faces, it remains a popular school and will continue to see its enrollment increase each year, he said. Residence Life expects more than 200 students to be without housing for fall 2010, but Flynn said the situation is not all bleak.

“”It’s really not as bad as everyone is making it out to be,”” said Flynn. “”I mean, it wasn’t my number one choice, but I thought it would turn out fine and it totally did.””


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