New housing deadline

Earlier this month, the housing lottery left some students puzzled as to their housing situation next year, but definitive answers may soon be on the way.

On April 9, students who did not receive housing will be allowed to sign up for any available housing.

It is based on a first-come, first-serve basis and will be decided according to availability of the preferred housing a student selects.

The selection process for students who received housing ends on April 8, and the remaining spots will be given to students on the waiting list.

“We anticipate every student who wants housing who currently lives on campus will receive housing,” said Gilbert Arias, assistant vice president for student affairs.

Despite his reassuring words, as time passes, tension continues to rise for students who haven’t received housing yet and who are still unsure where they will be living next year. Sixteen percent of students who currently live on campus and wish to continue living on campus next year were not chosen in the lottery.

A Facebook group, known as “Homeless UM Students 2010” was created to allow students who did not receive housing to communicate with each other. There are currently 394 members. It has transformed into a forum for students to help each other find alternative housing.

Charlie Roberts, the group’s creator, did receive housing in the UV; his roommate and several of his other friends, however, did not.

“I created the group as a way to get people together who feel like they’ve been ripped off and to figure out if they had any ideas as what to do next,” Roberts said.

This year marks the first year that a lottery system has been used as a means of assigning housing.

A very simple system was administered on myUM, but next year there are plans to make the lottery more complicated. For example, if a student opts in for the lottery and later decides that he/she no longer wants to live on campus, there will be a way to opt out.

Sophomore Matt Maggio did not receive housing via the lottery and claims it has affected both him and his family.

“My family is definitely stressed out,” he said. “It could potentially put a financial burden on us.”

Rebecca Zimmer may be contacted at