Students crowd Scarborough basement
Junior Chris Lamdin has only a bed and a wardrobe as he begins his first semester at Towson.
The bed and wardrobe are similar to the ones found in Residence Tower. The only difference for Lamdin is that his furniture is located in the basement of Scarborough Hall.
Lamdin is one of five students who have had to move into the basement of Scarborough as part of overflow housing.
According to Jerry Dieringer, the assistant vice president for student affairs, students who turn in their housing deposits last are the ones subjected to overflow housing if the University finds that there are no other rooms for those students on campus.
“We knew the total number of spaces that would be available to students and we got those right on the mark,” Dieringer said. “We also need to know the balance of males and females living on campus, and we were off on that, so five[four] males need to go into overflow housing.”
The students will know where their new rooming assignments will be by the end of next week.
Dieringer said Housing and Residence Life first must find out where there are empty spaces before they are able to give the students rooms. These spaces are determined through check-in, as a number of students often don’t come back to the University in between summer and winter breaks.
“There are always no-shows, but we just don’t know who those no-shows are yet,” he said.
Lamdin, who just transferred from the Community College of Baltimore County, said so far his experience in the overflow housing has been “inconvenient.”
“The showers that are down in the basement only had cold water for the first few days,” he said. “It feels weird because all of the beds are pushed together down here and we’re all really close together.”
Junior Jason Breslin who lives in the overflow housing with Lamdin said he knew he paid the housing deposit towards the end of the deadline, but still would like to be out of the overflow housing.
“There’s four of us, which isn’t too bad, but the TV down here doesn’t have any volume and it’s stuck on Cartoon Network, but at least it’s quiet since we’re down in the basement,” he said.
HRL tries to offer the same amenities as anyone else living on campus to overflow students, Dieringer said.
“We at least can offer them housing with cable TV, and we try to keep it the same except with more people in the room,” he said.
Lamdin’s father Mike Lamdin said he was informed that the University’s policy was to refund 20 percent of the cost of on-campus housing to students living in overflow for the amount of time that the student spends in overflow.
However Mike Lamdin said he wasn’t told of his son’s situation until Jan. 22, six days before he planned to help move in his son.
“I’m disappointed because it’s his first time away from home for school, but I fully understand that they are doing their best to fill up the housing,” he said. “I just think that in this particular situation, they need to find a better place to put these students for the time being.”
Mike Lamdin said he was upset that the features of the Scarborough basement were inadequate to offer students.
“He doesn’t have a desk, so his laptop has been broken already since he doesn’t have a place to put it,” he said. “There’s inadequate lighting too, it’s pretty dark, and there aren’t very many electrical outlets.”
Chris Lamdin said he plans to just wait it out until he can get put in a permanent room.
“It’s not as bad as I thought it would be,” he said. “I guess I’ll just wait for someone to leave school or back out of their housing.”