After a record number of freshmen were placed in forced triples in September 2011, the Residential Life (ResLife) Office has become determined to prevent this from happening again. ResLife plans to accommodate the large size of the class of 2015 by providing new options for all-sophomore clusters in the Butterfield Colleges next year. In addition, all students who lived in forced triples this year have been granted point adjustments, which will give them priority during the General Room Selection process.
“For next year, we’re trying to make sure that forced triples don’t happen as they shouldn’t have happened before,” said President Michael Roth.
These six-room clusters will be located on some of the second and third floors in the Butterfields and will be made available in the fall of 2012, after construction on the Butterfields has been completed (for our reporting on the Butterfields rennovations, see page 4). ResLife has specified that there will be nine Copenhagens and six six-person clusters, with two clusters in each participating hall.
“One of the benefits of the [Butterfields backfill] project is that we’ve been able to convert some existing parts into sophomore floors,” said Assistant Director of ResLife Stacey Phelps. “So it allowed us to provide sophomores with something they’ve been asking for.”
Like with the Copenhagens, the clusters will be comprised of one double and four single rooms. Each cluster will have one bathroom, as opposed to the Copenhagens which have two bathrooms located in their space.
“Over winter break we got a refined plan on [the project] as we were finalizing things,” Phelps said. “We know how popular Copenhagens have been and we were looking at how we could provide more opportunities like that for sophomores. So we came up with the six-person clusters.”
Given their similarities, ResLife has allowed any student applying for a Copenhagen to also be listed as applying for a six-person cluster. Rising sophomores must form a six-person group and complete the application by March 30. ResLife will notify applying students about their decision by April 4.
As the formation of the clusters was based on previous student feedback, Phelps hypothesized that applications for admittance into the Copenhagens or six-person clusters could prove competitive.
“There may be more [groups] than there is room for,” Phelps said. “You never really know. But based on the last two years, they’re clearly growing in popularity.”
The establishment of the six-person clusters has interested several students, but many remain uncertain of their chances.
“It’s another good option for a group of friends who want to live together,” said Zach Dravis ’15. “But I’m a little nervous about getting the Copenhagen and having enough people since it’s so competitive.”
The continuation of point adjustments for the large number of freshmen living in forced triples will most likely make room selection for rising sophomores more competitive. However, Phelps said that point adjustments are an important part of room selection.
“I don’t think I can say that it will be detrimental, but it is a factor that this year we’ll have a lot of people going in with point adjustments,” Phelps said. “A point adjustment is given because a person received a triple to help that person do better [in room selection] the next year. So when you think about this, it is working.”
Even though the class of 2015 is the largest class in University history, Phelps stated that it would not have a negative effect on the housing assignments for the prospective class of 2016 or any future classes. Phelps also echoed Roth’s statement that there will be considerably fewer forced triples next year, as she expects the class of 2016 to be the standard class size.
“The class next year will not be as big, and I think that’s part of why we we’re in the situation we were in this last year,” Phelps said. “We will be going back to a normal size. We will have the regular number of triples that we had the year before. So we’re going back to the way things were.”
However, Phelps did admit that the large class size could cause problems for the class of 2015 in the future.
“There will be an effect of the Class of 2015 being so big,” Phelps said. “I don’t necessarily think that it will affect the class after it, but I think it will be a factor with choosing HiRise and LoRises for [their] junior year.”
The General Room Selection process will begin on April 16.