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2009 Spring Issue 6 (May 15, 2009)

With new Memorial and Cassat dorms, Room Draw more unpredictable than ever

May 15, 2009
By Shreya Singh

Carleton this week had its annual room draw, which is a period of high anxiety and excitement for most students living on campus. The room draw this year was even more exciting and unpredictable because of the two new dormitories, Memorial and Cassat, which have the capacity to accommodate 230 people.

The lottery numbers for the current room draw were released in the beginning of February along with Residential Life’s statement that Northfield Option, which is the chance for rising seniors to live in off campus housing, will be reduced to only 100 students.

The draw started on Monday for rising seniors, followed by rising juniors on the next day and sophomores on Thursday.

According to Steve Wisener, Director of Res Life, this year’s Room Draw, as of early this week, had so far gone smoothly. Wisener said, “Students seem to be much more prepared as they came to draw this year. We haven't had any students who seemed to be doing some last minute scrambling to find the right amount of roommates to fill their spaces”.

As expected, the townhouses continue to be the top draw for students. Davis quints were also popular with the seniors, though the surprise was that the suites in Memorial hall, an all upperclassmen dorm, filled up before all of the Severance quads which, are popular as they are part of the Sayles complex. “The novelty of the new dorms is hard to beat,” said Ava Navasero, a rising sophomore who was surprised that some of her rising senior friends had opted for a Memorial suite instead of a townhouse. The singles in Cassat were also popular for rising seniors and all the singles there were filled on the first night of the draw.

But while the new dorms are a source of high attraction, for most students the appeal of living in a townhouse is hard to beat, especially since the new dorms follow the meal plan which the townhouses do not. Mahima Swarup, who was the most enviable person at the room draw, a rising senior who had the room draw number 1, opted for Nason house, which is supposedly the best town house on campus. According to Swarup, the luxury of living in a townhouse gives you much greater independence. “No more shutting down of late night parties” joked Swarup.

Senior draw lasted until after 10 pm on Monday but Reslife was able to house almost 400 students on the same day. Rising junior night went much quicker as 222 students were done with draw by 8:15. Several juniors who expected the draw to go on longer showed up late and realized they had missed their spot and had to quickly get into line to draw. Triples were the popular choice for draw on junior night.

As the last night of draw starts, there are still 294 students left who need housing. Wisener stated “There are still lots of good options available so it should be another smooth night of draw for us”. Most of the spots available for the rising sophomores are in Goodhue and Musser. Overall the room draw has gone quite satisfactorily for most students who seem happy with what rooming they have been able to get. Colleen Tjosvold, a rising junior who is living in a Cassat double next year, stated that she was very happy with the results of the draw which was stressful when she was going through it.

According to Wisener, the only glitch for Room Draw so far has been the “burnt popcorn that set off the fire alarm on the first night that caused a brief interruption in the process.”

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