Northwestern plan for on-campus housing remains unclear


Daily file photo by Catherine Buchaniec

Rebecca Crown Center. Northwestern will prioritize housing for first-year students next year.

Catherine Buchaniec, Reporter

Northwestern’s plan to provide housing to all students who indicate they want to live on campus next year remains ambiguous, with potential impacts for financial aid, based on emails obtained by The Daily. 

In an email to some students, which was sent after they submitted the University’s Intent to Stay form, Residential Services said on-campus housing will be prioritized for first and second-year students. 

“While we hope to accommodate as many interested students as possible, some second, third, fourth year, and transfer students will initially be placed on a waitlist,” the email stated. 

NU previously informed students in an email sent Friday that Residential Services will be operating under a single-occupancy framework. All students can opt to cancel their housing contract with no cancellation fee if done by August 1.

Should students live at home during the school year, their financial aid will be adjusted, according to an additional email obtained by The Daily sent to a student from the Office of Undergraduate Financial Aid. 

“If you will reside in a family member’s home, your expenses to Northwestern will decrease by a significant amount,” the email stated. “Since your expenses and your bill to the University will decrease, your financial aid will also decrease.”

As a result of the decreased aid, financial aid refunds may be adjusted accordingly. 

The email added that should students opt to live in an apartment off-campus in Evanston, their financial aid will not be altered. 

In its response to the Intent to Stay form, the University said it is committed to housing all students with contracts, but room assignments may be delayed for some while building options are matched to demand. Buildings may be opened or closed depending on anticipated occupancy levels. 

Due to the limited number of beds on campus and limited off-campus quarantine sites, Residential Services could require Chicago-area students to return home should a shortage occur. 

The University has yet to indicate what will happen if the number of housing contacts exceeds Northwestern’s housing capacity even after accounting for Chicago-area students. 

Residential Services will send room assignments by August 7.

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