Upperclassmen dorms nonexistent

Cassie Sullivan and Cassie Sullivan

As freshmen, some University students look forward to moving into “upperclassmen” residence halls once their first year is complete.

But upperclassmen-only residence halls technically don’t exist.

“People have perceived and [it] has become known as upperclassmen residence halls, are actually some would call our nicer residence halls,” said Sarah Waters, director of Residence Life. “Upperclassmen have gravitated to those buildings in their second year.”

Waters said one of the reasons is that students are attracted to the suite-style [Founders and Falcon Heights], air conditioning and bigger rooms [Offenhauer].

Part of a strategy brought to Residence Life by the President’s Office and Student Life asked for freshmen to be put into Falcon Heights this year.

“We were asked to look at it by the Presidents’ Office and Student Affairs,” Waters said. “We have a lot of students who in their first years, desire to live in nicer housing.”

This year, about 50 freshmen live in Falcon Heights.

While Waters said a distinction between upperclassmen and underclassmen housing doesn’t exist, students do believe there is a distinction in both types of housing, along with the type of community freshmen would be living in while in Falcon Heights.

Senior Megan Marnien said she lived in Centennial Hall during her freshman year before moving into her sorority’s house for her sophomore year.

“I [don’t] think Falcon Heights has the community freshmen need,” Marnien said. “I feel like other dorms are just more friendly and have their doors open and Falcon is like, I have my friends.”

Part of the reason there are freshmen living in the nicer residence halls is because colleges and learning communities are in different halls.

“Offenhaur has traditionally had learning community students in it. Founders with Honors College and Honors Community … now Founders has more than a few freshman for the past two years,” Waters said.

The date students sign up for housing in the spring is a factor in determining housing.

“If all the spaces are available on sign-up day, the upperclassmen and returning students will fill those spaces quickly because it’s seen as an upgrade,” Waters said.

Leanne Wainio, a senior, lived in Harshman and then Falcon Heights for her sophomore and junior years. She said it could be problematic.

“I think that Falcon [Heights] is first and foremost an upperclassmen dorm, so if I was an upperclassman and I didn’t get into Falcon, but a freshman did, I would be pretty upset,” Wainio said.

For more information on student housing, visit the Residence Life website.