New residence halls and one-price dining in university’s future

On Jan. 19, at the Inter Organizations Council meeting, Brad Williams, vice president of student affairs, informed students that the university’s master plan includes the replacement of Founders, Farquhar and Vettel residence halls with a  new residence hall and the possibility of a one-price dining option.
Williams said the new dining option, where students would pay fixed rates per meal, is being considered because of feedback from students.
Antonella Sanchez, freshman psychology and communication studies double major said, “I feel that we really need more dining options because it’s very easy to get tired of the food. Some of us have food preferences as it is, so it makes it even worse. We need a larger variety of healthy food.”
The plan for the new residence hall, Williams said, came from university officials’ decision that the space that FFV takes up can be used to build a residence hall that houses more students, and is more modern and in line with the rest of the residence halls on campus. Currently, FFV houses 150 students.
Vanissa Benjamin, junior communication studies major, said that she hopes the new residence halls will have the look and feel of a community space, much like the Commons [residence hall].
However, Benjamin expressed concern about possible construction scheduling.
“When the university does begin planning and FFV is torn down, where will the students who would have been assigned to those residence halls live? And what will administration do to ensure that construction does not disrupt the flow of student life on campus?” she said.
Williams said a construction plan for the tearing down of FFV hasn’t been created yet.
Dashka Gabriel, undergraduate SGA Inter Organizations Council senator said, the intentions to “collegify” the university are great, but that student input should be an integral aspect of the planning of any new residence halls on campus.
“Because students are the ones that will reside in the residence halls, and because residential students call the university home, student input regarding the layout of the rooms and common spaces in new residence halls is instrumental to ensure a level of efficiency and comfort,” said Gabriel.
Gabriel also said she hopes that the university considers their commuter students in its plan.
“Of the 28,000 students, 70 percent are commuter students. Emphasis should also be simultaneously placed on creating spaces on campus that cater to commuter students as well,” she said.

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