Rushed renewal

Sara Macho

Late start forces students to make hasty rooming decisions

Credit: Beth Rankin

“This is the story of seven strangers picked to live in a house …”

No, The Real World isn’t taking up residence at Kent State, but many students may find themselves in a situation similar to that of the cast — minus the cameras.

Residence Hall Contract Renewal began Jan. 19 for students living in the same room next year.

Megan Lucas, a junior psychology major living in Wright Hall, was going to renew her contract, but couldn’t decide what she wanted to do.

“My friends and I discussed over break where to live next year, but didn’t come up with any conclusions,” Lucas said. “We haven’t made our schedules for next year yet, but already we have to decide where to live.”

Some students are complaining there just isn’t enough time to decide where to live and who to live with.

Boni Fernandes, a junior Spanish major living in Leebrick Hall, does not have time to review the Residence Hall Contract Renewal booklet her RA distributed.

“At least give us time to settle in,” she said. “Residence Services don’t put students’ needs ahead, they do what works for them.”

Freshmen renew their contracts Jan. 31.

“It seems kind of rushed,” said Vera Smith, a freshman voice performance major. “I know people who have no idea where they’re living.”

Smith and her friend, Kelley Kirchner, freshman applied mathematics major, have not discussed where they will live next year and “have no idea about roommates.”

Jonathan Neuzil, a junior finance major living in Centennial Court E, feels the contract renewal process does not seem rushed.

“I think Residence Services need the time,” he said. “It’s so complicated, they need the time to make changes.”

T.J. Logan, assistant director of Residence Services, feels the renewal process may seem rushed because of the timing of spring semester.

Incoming freshmen are among the earliest students to receive a housing assignment, said Logan.

“When students do their PASS Program starting in February, they walk away with a housing assignment,” Logan said. “We feel this builds a connection to the university.”

Just two years ago, the university went from filing index cards to putting the renewal process online.

According to Logan, three years ago, residents would put their living choice on an index card and hand them into their RAs. The index cards would then be gathered into stacked piles in the Residence Services office located in Korb Hall.

Kent is the second school in the nation to make the renewal process available online, said Logan.

This year, students shouldn’t be experiencing many of the same computer problems they did last year, when the Online Contract Renewal process debuted. Residence Services has also made many improvements to the housing Web site.

“We’ve sent out online surveys. The Web site has a new look. There will be more confirmation e-mails, less errors and busy times and a new server has been added only for the renewal,” Logan said.

Contact features reporter Sara Macho at [email protected].