Op-ed

On-campus housing 101

Photo courtesy of wcupa.edu.

If you know anything about living on-campus after your first year, you know you can either live in traditional housing or affiliated housing. If you know anything about affiliated, or University Student Housing (USH), you know it’s supposed to be very nice and VERY expensive.

I spent two years living in the South Campus Apartments that are run solely by the Office of Residence Life and Housing. While this was the cheapest option of apartments on South Campus, I always wondered what it was like to not pay for laundry, have your own room and more than one bathroom to share among 4-5 people.

My friends and I decided that we would “live in luxury” our last year of college and live in The Village. The biggest difference about living in The Village is the cost. I was paying something over $2,000 dollars a semester, but The Village costs over $5,000 dollars a semester.

I figured all the amenities would be well worth it, right?

The first thing we were tasked to do as potential lessees was to figure out which apartment building and unit we wanted. We chose a building closest to the Village Clubhouse so we could make the shuttle and make it to class on time.

The first big strike was a month or so later when we got an email about a random building change. We were moved to the building farthest from the clubhouse. This was my first big annoyance with USH. I am sure there were reasons for us being moved to a different building, but why make us pick where to live if we were just going to be moved anyways?

The second big strike was move-in. My friend moved in early for her on-campus job and texted us ranting about how nothing was working upon move-in: the washing machine wasn’t functional, the dish washer had dishes in it from previous tenants and was filthy and the microwave was filled with dirt and scum.

This was extremely unsettling. If we were paying so much money, the last thing we expected was to come in to a dysfunctional apartment with dirty dishes from the semester prior.

Upon my move-in, something strange I noticed was that all the bedrooms did not have lights. There were switches, but no functioning lights. We later found out from a maintenance worker that they controlled the electricity in the room (hence why one of my roommates complained her fridge was not on – the mysterious switch was off).

If you know anything about affiliated, or University Student Housing (USH), you know it’s supposed to be very nice and VERY expensive.

I also found the process of hooking up my television to the cable provided in the room to be very stressful. I figured out the kind of television I had was not compatible, so I had to purchase a converter box on Amazon just for my television to work. In turn, the converter box did not read all of the possible channels I could have – so the leftover channels were just static or unavailable.

Now, I know in the grand scheme – things just happen. But, I feel so hung up on the fact that we paid $10,000 dollars this year and as we think back, we enjoyed the South Campus Apartments just as much. There are families that dish this money out all on their own and expect their child to live comfortably, especially for the amount of money being paid.

I enjoy the free laundry in-unit, I truly do, but there’s more to having tenants be comfortable than that. I hope that next year some of these kinks can be worked out for the next group of students living here.

Sunny Morgan is a fourth-year student with a communications, media and culture major. SM848270@wcupa.edu

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