OSU freshmen must live on campus by 2013Posted August 17th, 2012 by raskausn
Requirement is part of effort to improve student retention, success
[Albany Democrat-Herald, Aug. 18, 2012} — CORVALLIS — Starting in the fall of 2013, freshmen at Oregon State University will be required to live on campus.
The university is describing the change as an integral part of its recently revised First Year Experience program for new students, which is intended to help students succeed academically and improve retention.
“If you look at top universities in the country in terms of academic success and student retention, almost all of them require students to live on campus their first year,” said Susie Brubaker-Cole, associate provost for academic success at OSU. “The learning and community-building that occur in campus residences are focal points of the first-year experience.”
For the 2012-13 academic year, a standard double room in one of the less-expensive residence halls costs $7,129.80 for the year, according to rates posted on the OSU website.
A task force of OSU faculty, staff and students has been working on ways to help students thrive academically and personally during their first year. It concurs with what many national studies have found: The best way to ensure that students return for their sophomore year is to help them “connect” to campus in a meaningful way, said Brubaker-Cole, co-chair of the task force.
“What we’re seeking is a ‘high-touch’ experience for students during that first year when it becomes critical for them to interact in meaningful ways with other students, with faculty and with campus programs,” she said. “A lot of this happens in the classroom, but much of it is an extension of classroom learning that reaches into life on campus and the experiences you have as a member of campus communities.”
Tom Scheuermann, director of University Housing and Dining Services at OSU, says his office has assessed its overall on-campus housing capacity and will have adequate space for the live-on-campus requirement. In addition to the International Living-Learning Center that opened last year and houses 320 students, OSU’s on-campus capacity will get a boost from a new residence hall that is in design with a planned opening of fall 2014.
Scheuermann said on-campus capacity this fall should be about 4,300 spaces, which will grow by another 300 in 2014 with the new hall. And some floors in Finley Hall that will be off-line in the coming academic year, or used for office space, will reopen in fall of 2013.
In recent years, about 80 percent of the new-to-OSU freshmen have lived on campus.
There will be some exceptions granted to the new requirement, OSU officials say, though specifics have yet to be determined.
See the original article from the Albany Democrat-Herald website.