Students in the dorms beat by the heat

BGSU’s current, future residence hall renovations
BGSU student Simon Eigon cooling off in front of the Bowen-Thompson Student Union.
BGSU student Simon Eigon cooling off in front of the Bowen-Thompson Student Union.
Heidi Gasser

“When I did my move in, my only two options were Kohl and Kreischer. So, it was a no win situation.”

— Alexa Govedich

Students in some BGSU dorms are enduring extreme heat without air conditioning, as temperatures rise into the high 80s and 90s during August and September. 

Third-year nursing student Alexa Govedich expressed concern about how today’s students are supposed to cope with the current heat. 

Kohl and Kreischer residence halls are not air conditioned, and currently house hundreds of on-campus students. 

In Kohl Hall, Govedich measured temperatures as high as 90 degrees in her dorm room. She suffers from a heart condition that is worsened by excessive heat. Considering her health, Govedich says she would have liked to live in an air conditioned dorm.

A fan showing temperature in the dorm room on Sept. 3., in the early evening. (Alexa Govedich)

“When I did my move-in, my only two options were Kohl and Kreischer,” Govedich said. “So, it was a no win situation.”

Just days after moving in, Govedich said she and other Kohl residents grew desperate for relief on one of the hottest nights of the year. 

“My roommate and I would either take little naps in the lobby because it’s the only place that’s air conditioned or we would stay with friends who live in other buildings,” Govedich said. “All of the girls were out in the hallway and we were trying to figure out what to do together.” 

She says she has been struggling to compensate for the effects of the heat. 

“I felt hungover because I am so tired,” Govedich said. “I am trying to learn my nursing skills, and be involved at the lab, and I am falling asleep standing up practically because you don’t get to sleep.” 

Brecken Gamby is a first-year digital arts major who says she ended up living in Kreischer for its affordability. 

Gamby has experienced going without AC back home, but says she didn’t expect the level of heat she felt in her dorm. She has been improvising to stay cool with a “homemade air conditioner” made with ice and a fan. 

“It worked for the first half hour maybe,” Gamby said. “The ice melted and then the fan was just pushing around hot air at that point.” 

Both Govedich and Gamby say students have been residing in air conditioned lounges or lobby areas in their dorms. Some students attempted to sleep in dorm computer labs and classrooms, despite being told not to by residence hall staff. 

“I get it if the university can’t install AC, I just wish that there was something that could be done to help,” Gamby said. “I just wish that students had more places to stay, or had more areas inside the building that are air conditioned.” 

Gamby stated it always feels hotter in the dorms than outside of them. 

“I really hope it gets better someday. If not for me during my visit at college, then for the future generations who go to college,” Gamby said. “I hope they have dorm rooms that are comfortable to stay in and they don’t have to worry about not having air conditioning.”

BGSU’s current, future residence hall renovations

BGSU dorm conditions are not an unfamiliar topic for faculty at the university, as current and future upgrade plans to residence halls are in progress.

The university closed McDonald Hall for the 2023 to 2024 academic year to install air conditioning. The hall is set to reopen in fall of 2024, with the new renovations promising AC in all bedrooms, study spaces and social lounges.

A spokesperson with the university said that Kohl Hall will undergo similar renovations, set to begin in the summer of 2025. These renovations are the first part of the BGSU master upgrade plan.

Kreischer, however, has no finalized plans in place, as the University is currently undergoing a review process for potential ventilation upgrades. 

“Bowling Green State University prioritizes the health, safety and well-being of those within its learning community, and we will continue to be open to new ideas and solutions for students to find relief on hot days,” said BGSU Chief Well-Being Officer Ben Batey. 

BGSU student Simon Eigon cooling off in front of the Bowen-Thompson Student Union.
(Heidi Gasser)

BGSU also held a “Beat the Heat” event for students Thursday, Aug. 24, as the National Weather Service issued a heat advisory for the area. The event was hosted by the Campus Activities.

The “Beat the Heat” event brought water slides, snow cone trucks, refreshment stations and more to various areas around campus. 

Despite the event, some students still have concerns over the current conditions in Kohl and Kreischer, as to what measures the university is currently taking.

“Students with specific safety-related questions or concerns are encouraged to contact the university directly at [email protected] or discuss with their residence hall director,” said Batey.

For more information on contacting The Division of Community Well-Being visit their website here.

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