The big buzz in our halls the last couple of weeks has been returning student housing sign ups, and our decision to move the process up from next spring to this October. We realize this surprised a majority of our residents and are sympathetic to your concerns. We are here to support everyone throughout the process.
We believe that the timeline change is in the best interest of our students. Life on campus and academic success are strongly linked. Students who live on campus consistently have higher GPAs than their off-campus classmates. Those who live on campus all four years are also more likely to graduate. And with students already talking about where and with whom to live next year — and many leases due before the our traditional spring housing sign ups — we want students to be able to compare all of their options.
In the past, students were forced to forgo our spring on-campus process to sign off-campus leases in time. Now, they don’t have to. We’ve waived the $200 deposit, which means that students can form their groups, go through housing and see if they can get the on-campus spot they want. Only if they sign up for housing, and later cancel (before March 10, 2015) will students be asked to pay the $200 cancellation fee.
We understand the concern about a condensed time period for students — especially freshman — to meet and agree upon roommates. We anticipated this, but believe it is important to align our on-campus process with the off-campus housing timeline. And again, we are here to help. Every community is offering support through events and/or private listservs for students who need to find roommates. A group of RAs has also come together to offer community tours for students and families during Family Weekend.
It’s also important to note that students will not be locked into their room choices. We are leaving the housing system open throughout the fall and most of spring to allow students to change roommates, rooms, buildings and communities as space allows.
Life on campus is unique and creates a strong sense of community. At no other time in life will you have the opportunity to live with 7,000 engaging Binghamton students — your peers and leaders — and experience intentional, fun programming conducted by caring staff.
We are committed to helping our residents navigate the 2015-16 returning housing sign-up process. The sign-up process and frequently asked questions are available on our website at reslife.binghamton.edu/housing. Additionally, we are holding information sessions in each of the residential communities — students are welcome to attend any session that fits into their schedule. Then in October, staff will table in each of the residential dining halls.
We understand that this is a significant change to our housing sign up timeline; but we remain committed to providing an excellent on-campus living experience and hope that you will continue to make Binghamton University your home away from home.
Director of Residential Life and University Housing