Priority system adjusts for those without roommates

Elizabeth Campbell

Priority system adjusts for those without roommates

The first round of housing assignments progressed smoothly, but students seeking a double without a roommate did raise an unanticipated issue, said Mark D’Arienzo, associate director for university housing.

This year’s change to a completely priority-number based system allows students to choose rooms in number order without separate days for singles, doubles and multiple-occupant rooms.

But the small number of students without roommates seeking doubles creates issues for officials looking to use space most efficiently.

To fix this, D’Arienzo, who said he has so far talked to about 10 students in this situation, is proposing to adjust the assignment schedule so that those students will be assigned housing after complete rooming groups have gone.

D’Arienzo said he encourages students without roommates to continue looking for a roommate.

Although D’Arienzo said he wants the process to be fair to those without roommates, he said the efficient use of space is in the best interest of all students.

“I want to make sure that the students who do have roommates are not disadvantaged by students who are sitting in rooms that are half-filled,” D’Arienzo said.

At the end of the housing process, unfilled rooms are automatically given to freshmen. While upperclassmen might not mind living with a freshman, D’Arienzo said the reverse is not true, and housing officials try to make the transition to college as easy as possible for first-year students.

“Returning students tend to have a friendship base already in place,” D’Arienzo said, “and oftentimes freshmen roommates look to other freshmen to go to (events with).”

D’Arienzo also addressed possible scheduling conflicts with housing appointment times, because many students might be celebrating the Jewish holiday of Passover.

“If students can’t be there, they can either send someone in their stead or the undergraduate housing office is more than willing to act as their proxy,” said D’Arienzo. “We are going to be there anyway,” he said with a laugh.

— Elizabeth Campbell