Hitting the Housing Lottery Jackpot

The spring semester is here, and that means preparation for the upcoming housing selection lottery are already at the forefront of residential students at the University. 

Upon returning to school last Monday, residents returned to find a blue book in their dorms and suites explaining the details.  While deposits and contracts will be submitted soon, the actual selection does not take place until the middle of April.  Those looking for on-campus housing will be given a random number in their term group (sophomores/ all transfers, juniors or seniors) and can make selections based on the number they receive which determines availability and range from 1-999 per term group.  

The hope is that a low number will be given allowing for the highest possibility of options designated to that group.

 Danielle Walsh, a sophomore and resident of Maplewood apartments, was excited and relieved as her friend got a low number.  She explained, “I was so excited when my friend, Michelle, got a low number last year.  We got to pull our whole suite, plus my sister, into Maplewood Apartments this year, one of the nicest buildings to live in on campus.”

Kelly Hughes, also a sophomore, was not as lucky, as she and the rest of the suite got very high numbers and had to pick Spruce Hall as a result.  “We love our suite,” she notes, “but we would have preferred to be in Maplewood Apartments because it can get very tight in Spruce with eight of us.  I am dreading the process this year and some of us may move off campus.”

Of course, possible scenarios must be thought about well before the drawing. 

Jillian Vogel, a freshman, has no particular preference about next year since on-campus options (with the exception of those who fill out an application for Pier village and get pulled out) are available only to rising sophomores. “I am keeping my fingers crossed for a good draw, though I have no preference,” she explained enthusiastically.

Very few people get pulled out of the selection process.  Skip Carey, Director of Disability Services explained, “Only single rooms in Elmwood and Pinewood hall are excluded from the lottery for on-campus housing.  These are only available to specific students who need them based on documentation of a medical condition.  If a student does not need one, then he or she has the same options as everyone else, including off campus apartments, during the process and changes may be made after if needed and the paperwork is submitted on time.”

Resident assistants are the other group who get pulled out.  Rebecca Leitt, who is a new RA to Elmwood this term, explained, “I never went through it. I was hired right away, but studied abroad last semester so this is my first term here.”

There is a lot for one to think about during the selection process.  Deposits can be submitted during February 7-22 and numbers are emailed at the end of March for April selections.

IMAGE TAKEN from passaiccharter.org