Lower Percentage of Freshmen Request Adjustment in Lottery

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Burton-Conner House’s head rooming chair James Torres ’10 addresses the dorm’s freshmen before the start of floor rush in the Porter Room of Burton-Conner on Wednesday evening.
David M. Templeton—The Tech

CORRECTION TO THIS ARTICLE: The Aug. 29, 2008 news article “Lower Percentage of Freshmen Request Adjustment in Lottery” had an inaccurate headline. As stated in the article, about the same percentage of eligible freshmen entered the lottery this year as compared to last year, not a lower percentage.

About the same percentage of eligible freshmen entered the Housing Adjustment Lottery this year as compared to last year, representing more students entering the lottery overall. More freshmen were eligible to enter the lottery this year because of the new policy allowing freshmen assigned to Next House to switch to a different dorm.

A lower percentage of those entering the lottery were able to move into a different dormitory as compared to last year.

The lottery, which closed on Tuesday with the end of Residential Exploration, required freshmen to confirm their temporary Summer Housing Lottery assignment or rank up to four other dormitories they would rather move to.

A total of 256 students decided to enter the Adjustment Lottery this year, which is an increase from last year’s 209 freshmen. However, only 152 of the 256 students (59 percent) were able to successfully move to a different dorm this year, which is lower than last year’s 74 percent (154 of 209 students). (For more housing statistics, see the tables on page 12.)

Of the 1,049 freshmen, 989 were eligible to enter the lottery. The remaining students were either placed in McCormick Hall (59 freshmen) or live off campus (1 freshman). Last year, 849 of 1,067 students were eligible to enter the lottery.

“The extra surge of students in the Adjustment Lottery reflects our new agreement with the Residential-Based Advising office and the Undergraduate Advising and Academic Programming office to allow those in Next House to have more flexibility in their housing options,” said Robin (Smedick) Baughman, assistant director of undergraduate housing. “About the same number of students switched in and out of each dormitory as past years.”

Next House freshmen took advantage of the new option — 45 requested to move to a different dormitory. The new policy was put into place after years of Next House student concerns regarding the inflexibility of their housing options, which required freshmen to stay in the dorm the entirety of the first year because of Residence-Based Advising.

The other dormitory participating in RBA is McCormick Hall. The freshmen housed in McCormick are currently not eligible to enter the Adjustment Lottery. Last December, when Next chose to allow students to enter the lottery, McCormick decided not so, since the RBA system traditionally worked well for McCormick.

Out of the 152 students who were able to switch to a different dormitory, 86 freshmen received their first choice option.

Among the 256 who entered the Adjustment Lottery, 85 had received their first choice in the Summer Housing Lottery, 107 had received their second choice, 59 had received their third, and five had received their fourth. Most of the 107 students who received their second choice dorm in the Summer Lottery tried for their first choice summer preference in the Adjustment Lottery.

The most requested dorms in the Adjustment Lottery were Baker House (57 students requested Baker as their first choice), Burton-Conner (48 students), and Simmons (41 students). In the Summer Housing Lottery, Baker was also the most popular choice, followed by Simmons, Burton-Conner, MacGregor House, and East Campus.

Crowding still remains an issue for the undergraduate dorms, specifically East Campus, New House, Burton-Conner, Baker, McCormick, and Next House. “There were actually two extra spaces available in New House after the Adjustment Lottery, so we asked them to relieve some of the crowding there,” Baughman said. “We estimate that the final numbers will show that there will be approximately 85 to 90 students crowded in these dormitories this year.”

Last year at this time, there were approximately 80 crowds.