For the first time in three years, Loyola doesn’t expect to defer any juniors or seniors who apply for student housing, officials said.
Last year, about 200 rising juniors and seniors were placed on the deferred housing list and left wondering whether or not they would have a spot on campus for the upcoming school year, The Phoenix reported. Any upperclassmen the university didn’t have space for would be placed on the list, then would wait to hear if a spot opened up from a student leaving the university or dropping out of their housing contract.
With a decreased first-year class size and the addition of 408 beds in the brand-new Francis Hall — set to be complete fall 2020 — the deferred list could be a thing of the past, according to Clair McDonald, assistant director for assignments, marketing and communication for Residence Life.
Loyola plans to start grouping students by year beginning this fall, The Phoenix reported. Junior and senior students living on campus can be placed in Baumhart, Bellarmine, Canisius, Georgetown, LeMoyne, Marquette, Seattle, Spring Hill or Xavier Halls, according to Residence Life’s website.
“We’re also not closing anything, so there’s no offset of spaces,” McDonald said. “It’s just an additional 400 beds than what we’ve had in the past.”
The deferred list was originally implemented in 2016, when the university’s increased first-year class size left less room for juniors and seniors who, unlike underclassmen, aren’t required to live on campus, according to McDonald.
“We would never want to do a deferred list necessarily, it’s something we have to do based on the fact that we have to provide housing for freshmen and sophomores,” McDonald said.
Angel Caballero, a junior studying neuroscience, was one of almost 200 students placed on the deferred housing list last year after he decided to opt for housing on campus.
Caballero said he wasn’t given a housing assignment until about three weeks into the fall semester, and in the meantime had to commute from his grandparent’s home in Cicero, Illinois.
When he did receive an assignment, it was in Baumhart Hall on Loyola’s Water Tower Campus, and because it was too far from his classes on the Lake Shore Campus, he decided to live in an apartment with friends instead.
“I think it took them way too long, and it took too many people complaining for them to actually do away with it,” Caballero said. “I think if anything they were pressured by all the complaints that they got.”
McDonald said she believes the elimination of the list will attract more juniors and seniors to apply for housing. While she said the university supports upperclassmen living both on and off-campus, she sees a lot of benefits — such as dining, maintenance and by-semester contracts — of living on campus.
“I think a lot of the mental load of just being a person in the world is lessened by living on campus,” McDonald said. “Because a lot of things are sort of taken care of for you.”