By: Sarah Rowan, Assistant News Editor
Towson Housing and Residence Life have announced changes to on-campus housing eligibility in order to accommodate both new freshmen and returning students for the 2016-2017 academic year.
New West Village apartment-style housing options, Carroll and Marshall halls, will open Fall 2016, while Residence Tower will temporarily close during Summer 2016 for two years of renovation, according to Assistant Vice President of HRL Jerry Dieringer.
The altered criteria for eligibility will take effect beginning Fall 2016, and will not affect students returning for Spring 2016.
“We hope this helps inform them, so that if they are thinking about off-campus versus these apartments, they know they have this option,” Dieringer said.
New freshmen are guaranteed housing for four consecutive semesters. Current freshmen living on-campus will be eligible to return to on-campus housing, as long as they submit their housing contract and deposit by March 10.
Students who live on-campus with 90 or more credit hours by the end of Fall 2015 are not eligible to return to on-campus housing. Millennium Hall, as well as many off-campus housing options are available to these students.
Students living on campus with between 30-89 credit hours at the end of Fall 2015 are eligible to return to on-campus housing, as long as they submit their contract and deposit by March 10. These students will be required to live in the on-campus apartment options: Towson Run, Carroll Hall or Marshall Hall.
Full-time undergraduate students in their sophomore, junior or senior years are eligible to live in Millennium Hall, but Millennium is run through Capstone Management, not HRL.
Paca and Tubman Houses will be considered on-campus for eligibility purposes, and they count as part of the guarantee for two years of on-campus housing.
Exceptions to the eligibility rules include students living in an exempted Residential Learning Community, such as Honors College housing, or students with disabilities that require them to remain in residence halls.
“We want to make sure we honor our guarantee for everyone who wants to live on campus,” Dieringer said.
Residence Tower currently houses 500 students, made up of mostly freshmen and sophomores. Carroll and Marshall Halls will house 700 students.
“We have about 1100 beds in the apartments, between Carroll, Marshall and Towson Run,” Dieringer said. “We want as many upperclassmen over there as we possibly can.”
Financial aid eligibility will not change for students who are no longer eligible to live on campus, unless a student chooses to move back into their parents’ house.
The current rates for Towson Run are $4,073 per semester for a 1-bedroom, $3,850 per semester for a 2-bedroom and $3,295 per semester for a 4-bedroom residence.
The tentative rates for Carroll and Marshall Halls are $5,050 per semester for a 2-bedroom and $4,950 per semester for an apartment with four bedrooms. The rates for Carroll and Marshall are subject to change, but the cost for Towson Run could increase by up to four percent.
Dieringer said that HRL recognizes that the rates for Carroll and Marshall are more expensive than other housing options. However, students living in Towson Run, Carroll and Marshall are not required to purchase a meal plan, which will cut some of the extra cost.
“We are well aware that these prices are a little bit higher, because they are new buildings,” Dieringer said. “There is an affordable point in terms of the four-bedroom apartment in Towson Run. It’s almost the same price as a regular double room in regular housing.”
“We are very sensitive to people’s financial needs,” he said.
HRL will be sending more information out to students and parents before the semester ends.