Residence Services proposes adding a laundry fee to housing tuition

Laundry Room .jpeg

Linda Stocum

In response to the ongoing student Quality of Life Survey, Residence Services is considering adding a laundry fee to housing tuition.

Students currently pay $2.75 per washer load to do laundry in residence halls, and the proposed fee would add $40 per semester to the housing tuition.

Jill Jenkins, the executive director of Residence Services, said the department considered changing the way laundry is paid for on campus for a few years.

“For the last few years, fall and spring and another fall and spring again, it comes up that students are inquiring about they would prefer to have laundry included in our room rate,” Jenkins said.

Residence Services changed the accepted form of payment from coin to card in the laundry systems over the past few years in an attempt to address this problem, Jenkins said.

Kent Interhall Council (KIC) also provides an open forum for students to discuss concerns impacting student life on campus with student leaders.

George Papp McClellan, the KIC president, said students often express their concerns about the cost of laundry during meetings.

He said students are most concerned with finding money to pay for the amenity.

“Most of all, I think budgeting for laundry is something hard on most university students,” McClellan said. “Because they don’t come here with income or anything, having to draw that $2.75 out of the bank accounts sometimes can get a little iffy.”

To get student opinions on the topic, Resident Services added a question about it in the annual Quality of Life Survey, which is given to students living on campus to learn more about student life in residence halls.

Joaquin Cuatepitzi, a senior communications studies major who plans on living in Centennial Court D next semester, said he supports the fee.

“I would rather just have the fee and then do laundry whenever I want,” Cuatepitzi said.

Sommer Al-Azom, a freshman art education major who currently lives in Koonce hall, said she does laundry often, so paying a fee at the beginning of the semester would be more convenient.

“I feel like 30-minute cycles don’t get my clothes clean, so I’d do laundry more often,” Al-Azom said.

Jenkins acknowledged there are students who do not do their laundry on campus and may not support the laundry fee.

“A lot of students think that it would be really great not to pay for laundry, but there is also another voice that is going to say, ‘I’m not doing my laundry, and I don’t want to pay for it,’” Jenkins said.

However, Jenkins said student opinion must first be accounted for in order for Residence Services to propose the laundry fee to the board of trustees next year.

Jenkins encourages students to take the survey since there are other issues Resident Services have questions about and want student opinion on.

“The easiest way to quantify what the students want is through the survey,” Jenkins said.

Students can voice their opinion on this issue by taking the Quality of Life Survey, sharing their feelings with hall council representatives during meetings and going to the KIC to speak with representatives there.

Linda Stocum is the room and board reporter, contact her at [email protected].