A housing shortage at Pomona College that forced the college to lease College Park apartments this fall should not be a problem next year after the completion of the new dorm on North Campus.
“Admissions and housing is not an exact science, so it’s impossible to be certain,” Housing Director Deanna Bos said. “But as far as all projections go, there shouldn’t be a shortage.”
This fall, a drop in study abroad applications caused a housing shortage, prompting the Office of Campus life to offer the option of residence in College Park for the entire 2010-11 school year. Pomona usually guarentees housing for students during all four years at the college.
However, in anticipation of ample housing space next fall, Pomona will not be leasing from College Park next year. In fact, Bos said Pomona will likely reserve some rooms for Scripps students next year since Scripps will still be facing a housing shortage. She added that she did not yet know where those reserved rooms would be.
For the Pomona students who opted to live in College Park, located approximately 15 minutes walking distance east of the Smith Campus Center, the off-campus apartments provided a very different experience from on-campus life.
Amadé Edwards PO ’13, a current College Park resident, has mixed feelings about living in the off-campus apartments.
“I like the seclusion, being able to get away from school completely—there’s something invaluable in having that division in my life,” Edwards said. “And we definitely have a lot of fun here. The only downside here is the lack of real community. There are some people I live with daily that I hardly know, especially kids from the other colleges, but there are also some Pomona students who I wish I knew better.”
Another Pomona sophomore living in College Park, who wished to remain anonymous, expressed concern about students’ relationship with the other residents of the apartment complex.
“Sometimes I feel like we don’t belong here, there are many non-students living here,” the student said. “We party here, and that can bother adult residents, who sometimes complain to apartment management.”
Bos said that although the question of College Park residents returning to campus would have to be dealt with on a case-by-case basis, there is a definite possibility for students unsatisfied with their current rooms on campus to change rooms—for example, moving from South to North Campus.
Juniors currently living on campus have priority in spring housing changes over juniors coming back from abroad in the spring, and both have priority over sophomores who might want to move. Juniors who want to move from South to North Campus and juniors on North Campus who want to pull in people to fill vacancies in a friendship suite will be able to do so before Dec. 1, at which point there will be a room draw for students returning from abroad.
“It is possible that some juniors coming back may have to live on South Campus,” Bos said. “It depends on how many juniors now on South Campus want to move.”
However, the Office of Campus Life anticipates that significantly more students will be going abroad next semester than returning from abroad, opening up more rooms on campus. The exact difference between students who will study abroad this spring versus students who are currently abroad has not yet been determined.