Administration replaces 50 mattresses in CCI, continues to monitor potential mold


Jonathan Dai/The Daily Northwestern

The outside of Ayers College of Commerce and Industry. Administrators provided some students in CCI with new mattresses after complaints about what seemed to be mold on their old ones.

Yvonne Kim, Assistant Campus Editor

Administrators have provided some students in Ayers College of Commerce and Industry with new mattresses following complaints about what appeared to be mold on their mattresses.

In an email to CCI residents Tuesday morning, residence director Andre Herbert said 50 mattresses were replaced in the building. This was done after staff identified room numbers of students who needed new mattresses, according to a copy of the email obtained by The Daily.

Though not every student affected by the potential mold has received a new mattress, administrators are working on a solution, Herbert said in the email.

McCormick freshman Alex Nica, who received a new mattress after his original one was wiped down, said he thinks the situation is being handled well.

“Despite being off to a slow start and not being very communicative, I think in the end they acted decently quickly and accordingly after some complaints were filed,” he said.

Staff first took action Sunday night by wiping down mattresses of students who discovered what they assumed to be mold. Staff later began to replace the mattresses entirely.

Weinberg freshman Ulyana Kurylo, who also received a new mattress, said students’ parents contacted the University as well.

“Once people really started pushing at it more and once people got their parents involved, they started taking it more seriously,” Kurylo said.

Students found a questionable substance on their mattresses and bed frames, said Paul Riel, assistant vice president of residential and dining services. Samples of the substance were sent to a third-party lab today for further investigation, he said.

Herbert’s email said the Facilities and Construction team and the Office of Risk Management, will remain “vigilant” and continue monitoring the mattresses to find the root of the problem.

In another email to students, sent Monday night, Herbert said air quality testing was scheduled to begin on Tuesday. The building’s ventilation and humidity levels were checked and confirmed to be without issue, he said.

Riel said the next step is to finish replacing any mattresses of students who have not yet received a new one. He added that Resident Assistants will be going around students’ rooms to ensure there are no further concerns.

Nica credited students who spoke out about the mold in leading to the University response.

“If people hadn’t gone a little overboard in how they were complaining and how ardently they were trying to get mattresses, (the University) would have been fine just cleaning them,” Nica said. “It was the reaction from Ayers that got them to take it more seriously and once enough people got angry enough, they really started moving.”

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