Section: News

New Apartment and Suite Housing selection process ends

The new Apartment and Suite Housing (ASH) selection process concluded this past Thursday with the closing of three-person occupancy housing selections. The Office of Residential Life (ResLife) implemented the process for the first time this academic year in an effort to allow ResLife more time to handle the influx of requests during housing selection periods. It was also intended to make the housing process less strenuous on friendships. 

The updated ASH process utilizes a point system based on seniority. A second-semester senior is assigned six points, a first-semester senior is assigned five points and so on. The points add up to determine priority when making assignments; a group of four second-semester seniors will be awarded their top choice of housing before a group of four first-semester seniors. Groups then have 24 hours to accept their offer, as opposed to a few minutes under the previous system. Previously, groups had to scramble to drop someone if they were assigned a housing selection of a lower occupancy.

However, as the ASH process concluded, several students found themselves dissatisfied. “To me, it felt inequitable in a way that the other system didn’t,” Andrew Pilat ’25 said in an interview with the Collegian. After being a part of the Copenhagen cohort his first year, an off-campus program to manage overenrollment on campus, Pilat lived in the Meadow Lane Suites (Mods) his junior year. 

Pilat had previously relied on the assumption that “seniors and — if you’re lucky — juniors, are basically guaranteed apartments, and apartments that are relatively within their choosing.” With the new system, he felt that ResLife had removed that possibility from upperclassmen. “We didn’t really have a choice in what we decided,” Pilat said. “We ranked what we wanted, but then ultimately it came down to this invisible point system that preferenced super seniors.”

Pilat’s housing group was assigned a New Apartment with two doubles, which was their last choice. “I would have also liked ResLife to give some more clarity behind why they believe this system is more equitable,” he said. ResLife hosted a number of informational sessions about the new process prior to its implementation.

One of the biggest changes ResLife observed was less stress for students surrounding the process. “We recognize that housing selection can be stressful and the ASH process reduces some of that intensity by slowing things down and also giving groups a better idea of their options,” Director of Residential Life Leah Reuber wrote in an email to the Collegian.

Natalie Connelly ’25 found that the new ASH process did not decrease the strain on friendships as intended. Students had to drop a member of their housing group each time they did not receive an assignment for a certain occupancy selection. “Then it ends up being deliberate dropping,” Connelly said.

Reuber explained that ResLife will release multiple assessment surveys now that the process has concluded. “This will allow students to give us direct feedback on opportunities for improvement and whether or not we met our initial goals,” she wrote. The first of these surveys was released to the student body via email on Wednesday.

Pilat and Connelly acknowledged that the new process eliminates the possibility of students selling housing spots, which has been a problem in the past. “There is no number to sell,” Connelly said.

Both students also appreciated that if a group of students committed to a certain housing assignment, a member of the group could not be replaced by a student of a different point value. “You can’t sell your spot in an apartment to a junior if you’re a senior,” Connelly explained.

According to Reuber, ResLife will be providing data about the process in the coming months to prepare students at the start of this process next year: “most notably what group point totals were most represented in each application pool’s offers.”

“I sincerely appreciate how patient the student body has been with the introduction of a new process,” Reuber wrote. “They have been gracious in their understanding that the process will come with some hiccups and that the Office of Residential Life worked hard to develop a system that better supports student needs.”

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