A crowded campus leaves many students living in hotels

Almost 200 Grambling upperclassmen were given a rude awakening before the semester started, due to incomplete registration their rooms had been given away.

“I didn’t know they could do that,” said Amber Adger, a senior from Dallas, Texas who pre-housed in the spring. “My mom called the school because she couldn’t believe they would just kick out students who had already pre-housed.”

When Adger and her mother called the school they were told by housing that incoming freshman were put in the rooms of juniors and seniors who had not completed registration (paying their fees). They were then told that Adger would be put on a waiting list before she could get a room on campus.

Adger had to move off- campus to an apartment in Ruston.

“I had to come up with money I didn’t have,” said Adger. “Luckily, I had a car or I would have been out of luck.”

Leon Sanders, vice president of university operations said that the problem arose from many factors, including the number of students who had not finished registration and paid their fees.

“The school has a history of students who pre-house and then are no-shows,” said Sanders.

Sanders said that last year alone 350 students who pre-housed for the fall semester did not show up in the fall. The school looses out on money when this happens.

“The demand for rooms is higher now. We can no longer hold rooms,” said Sanders.

Another factor Sanders said caused the problem were the number of students who did not pre-house, or stayed off-campus and tried to move back into the dorms.

He also said that in the housing contract that students sign it states that pre-housing does not guarantee they will have a room in the fall semester.

Sanders stated that the reason freshman were put in upper-classmen dorms was because one of the school policies is that students with under 60 semester hours are required to stay on campus.

Students who did not have dorms were put in hotels in Ruston and take the shuttle bus to campus.

“We are trying to do whatever we can to accommodate students, said Sanders.

Alexis Washington, a sophomore from Monroe who was put out of his Pinchback dorm says he empathizes with the students who were out-of-state.

“My heart goes out to them, because I know what it’s like to be far away from home, with no family,” said Washington who reflects on his days at the University of Louisiana-Lafayette.

Washington started a group on Facebook titled “I Came All the Way to Grambling to Find Out I Was Homeless.” The group features a picture of a homeless man holding up a sign saying “I Know You See Me.”

“I put the picture up to make light of it, but it’s really a serious situation,” said Washington.

Washington started the group, which has 54 members, so that students could network and help each other out.

“What made me upset was how the school handled this situation,” said Washington.

Adger agrees saying the school could have re-done Jones to accommodate incoming freshman.

Sanders said that all 188 students who pre-housed have been put back in dorms, and that less than 100 students that did not pre-house are still in the hotels.