New program helps first-year students and Residential Life with housing assignments

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New program helps first-year students and Residential Life with housing assignments

Brooke Reilly

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Summer is quickly coming to a close, and in just a few weeks, students will once again be moving into the residence halls across Quinnipiac’s campuses. 

Last week, the class of 2023 learned what they’re housing assignments for the 2019-2020 school year will be. This year, first-year students will be living in The Commons, Dana English Hall, Irmagarde Tator Hall, The Ledges and Mountainview.

My College Roomie sample questions, photo courtesy: Quinnipiac University, Office of Residential Life

The Quinnipiac University, Office of Residential Life decided to use a new roommate matching program called My College Roomie. The program gives students a survey of questions such as, what time they like to go to sleep, how clean or messy they keep their rooms, etc. There is a slider that allows the students to answer the questions for themselves and what they would expect from their roommate(s). The program then creates a percentage match between the user and every other person who has taken the survey. 

“That’s been really powerful for students to find one another to determine who might be a good match and then begin communicating,” Director of Residential Life, Mark DeVilbiss, said. “Ultimately, they can request one another as roommates, or they could simply let Residential Life pair them up with students. We would make a match for them based on those lifestyle survey answers.”

This new matching program has gotten positive reviews so far.

My College Roomie sample questions, photo courtesy: Quinnipiac University, Office of Residential Life

My College Roomie’s roommate matching program worked really well for me and my roommates,” rising first-year student, Sam Hartmann, said. “We all bonded really quickly and are having a lot of fun getting to know each other. We even talked about how the program matched us so perfectly.”

Students are allowed to select their direct roommate on this program, but if they are assigned to a quad or suite style residence hall, they will be assigned another pair(s) of roommates to live with. The computer then randomizes which residence hall each pair or group of students will be living in.

Since this is the first year using this new program, there were a few minor glitches in the system.

“There was some data that was lost, and so we had to go back and retrieve it, and then go in and fix all of those errors,” DeVilbiss said. “We did that, and we were able to fix all of the errors. Within about a day or so… We were able to get everyone back with their desired roommate.”

Although rising first-year student, Megan Leonard, ran into this issue, she spoke highly of the program.

“When housing assignments first came out, I was worried because I wasn’t originally paired with the roommate I had chosen through My College Roomie,” Leonard said. “But we contacted QU, and they fixed it right away. Other than that, the process was easy.”

Several years ago, along with selecting one roommate, students were able to pick the top three residence halls that they desired to live in. The system now chooses where each pair is living randomly. Some students like this, while others do not seem to be fans of potentially not liking their assignments.

“I’m not too excited about living in Ledges, but I’m hopeful it will work out,” rising first-year student, Tommy Lucido said.

“We are keeping a waiting list of students who maybe think they might appreciate a different kind of living experience than what they got for their assignment,” DeVilbiss said. “But we are completely full, and so we will be keeping those requests on a waiting list and help them as we are able.”

With the loss of three residence halls, Larson, Perlroth and Troup, due to the discovery of asbestos last month, Residential Life had to make sure they could still accommodate all students who planned to live on campus. 

Non- traditional spaces in The Commons and The Ledges Residence Halls, photo courtesy: Quinnipiac University, Office of Residential Life Facebook page

“We may have some students living in non-traditional spaces in the first-year class, but there won’t be too many,” DeVilbiss said. “We luckily were very fortunate to have had enough space to accommodate all the students that originally were scheduled to be in Larson, Perlroth or Troup.”

Now that students know where they will be living, Residential Life is receiving calls from students and parents asking questions, such as the dimensions of the rooms, how high the bed is, how wide the wardrobe is, etc. Some students also ask to go see their rooms ahead of time, and Residential Life is doing its best to accommodate these requests.

 

First-year students will begin moving in with August orientation participants on Aug. 20 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Living-Learning Community (LLC) residents will move in from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. on Aug. 21. On Aug. 22, students living in Irmagarde Tator Hall can move in from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m., students living in The Commons and The Ledges can move in from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., and students living in Dana English Hall can move in from 12 p.m. to 3 p.m. Students living in Mountainview can move in from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. on Aug. 23.

“We’re eager to welcome students back to campus,” DeVilbiss said. “We are looking forward to providing a terrific experience in the residence halls for all QU students this year.”