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Simpson Res­i­dence. Col­legian

The first semester of college can be an exper­iment gone haywire for some stu­dents. For those who aren’t happy with their living sit­u­a­tions, the release of housing forms ini­tiates the perennial scramble to defect once again.

Between the Fall 2016 and Spring 2017 semesters last year, 44 stu­dents switched to a dif­ferent on-campus res­i­dence. Stu­dents may con­sider the option of moving back on campus or moving to a dif­ferent dorm res­i­dence.

Of the 44 from last year, 35 were women according to Dean of Women Diane Philipp. Nine of the women who switched were freshmen.

Aide to the Dean of Men Rita Conrad said there were only nine men who switched res­i­dences last year, but did not have infor­mation on their years. The data from pre­vious years could not be retrieved because the school shreds its paper records and over­writes the online housing infor­mation each year.

Dean of Men Aaron Petersen con­firmed that freshmen can switch dorms between their fall and spring semesters. Other res­i­dences, he said, are only allowed in extreme cases, such as fra­ternity members filling empty beds in their respective houses.

Petersen explained that it was per­mis­sible for off-campus res­i­dents to move on campus, but current on-campus stu­dents are only per­mitted to shift between other on-campus res­i­dences.

In the case of junior Laura White life at McIntyre Res­i­dence wasn’t ideal. About a week into the school year the transfer student asked to move into Whitley Res­i­dence because she had heard there were other transfer stu­dents and her current sit­u­ation “just didn’t seem like a good fit.” Since making the tran­sition, she said she’s been happy with her current res­i­dence.

“It has been very nice living in a res­i­dence hall with people in a similar sit­u­ation as me,” White said. “I’ve enjoyed it a lot.”

White ini­tiated her move by con­tacting Asso­ciate Dean of Women Rebekah Dell, who informed her there was an open room in Whitley. After talking to Judith Schell­hammer, Whitley’s House Director, White was able to transfer her belongings to the other dorm.

“It was hon­estly a very simple and uncom­pli­cated process, and housing was very helpful throughout it all,” she said.

Though White is a junior by credits, she explained she’ll likely be at Hillsdale for three years to finish the core and courses for her major. White’s roommate in Whitley, Leahi Johsens, is actually a true freshman, but she also switched dorms after surgery on her broken arm. Johsens decided to switch around the end of October, and has been living in Whitley for a month.

“The com­munity bath­rooms and high beds in Olds Res­i­dence made it dif­ficult for me to live com­fortably there while I was recov­ering,” she explained.

Freshman Declan Williamson also elected to move into another dorm. Williamson, a Simpson res­ident, will move into the vacant room in Koon Res­i­dence next semester. He’ll be joined by sophomore Luke Grzywacz, who lives in the Suites Res­i­dence.

“Most of my friends live in Koon,” Williamson said. “I spend more time there than in my own dorm.”

Williamson requested Simpson Res­i­dence as a freshman because it was “nice and new.” After making friends with Koon res­i­dents, he decided he pre­ferred their “laidback” com­munity and “less cramped” rooms.

Petersen noted that stu­dents, espe­cially men, might not take advantage of an oppor­tunity to change because of the time it takes to settle in.

“Even if they could switch the roommate they have, they’ve learned how to work out that sit­u­ation,” he said. “They’d prefer not to restart that process.”

Freshmen are also restricted to the four main men’s res­i­dences on campus, the dean said.

“We don’t let freshmen live in the Suites,” Petersen said. “We don’t release stu­dents off campus when there are beds available on campus.”