Student Lounge Accessibility
by Tyler Chin
Photography by Stephen Vocaturo
Refinery29 lists Boston University’s Student Village 2 (a.k.a. StuVi II) as one of their choices for “College Dorms That Put Your Apartment to Shame.” Boston.com has gone as far as describing it as, “a multimillion dollar vista.” Areas like the twenty-sixth floor of StuVi II and the basement of StuVi I are ideal study spots for all BU students. Once older students who have moved off campus arrive at any of the residence study rooms they are troubled to find that they are barred from entrance.
The only way off-campus students can get to these spots is if they ask their friends or other students to grant them a guest pass.
Looking for a place to crack your books open for midterms? Good luck finding someone who resides in the building to sign you in. Students find it a hassle to constantly use guest passes to grant access to others who want to use on-campus resources. Jordana Kulak (COM ’18) is one of many students who has had to use a guest swipe on her friends; something she finds completely ridiculous.
“I sign in my off-campus friends mainly because they want to use the study rooms,” said Kulak, a resident of StuVi II. “I find it’s more of a burden to sign them in when they want to use school resources as opposed to coming over to my suite.”
For the 2015-2016 school year, BU students paid $47,422 in tuition. To be denied on-campus resources seems a bit strange when it comes to an all-inclusive pass to accessibility. Ten percent of tuition goes towards auxiliary enterprises expenses like residence halls, dining services, student health services and more. It seems that barring students access to valuable and proper study spaces might deserve a discount.
“Students who live off-campus continue to have full access to the university’s academic, administrative and athletic and recreational facilities,” David Zamojski, Director of Residence Life said. “However, by choosing to move off-campus, these students surrender their access to residential buildings.”
For clarification, there are 18,017 undergraduate students enrolled in Boston University and on-campus housing can hold 8,037 students. This means 9,980 students are forced to live off-campus because the university does not have enough space to house almost half of the undergraduate student body.
Boston University limits the number of guest passes a student has to seven.
Additionally, the strenuous process a guest from another school must go through to get into a residence hall is the same process a BU student must go through to study.
The university’s main concern is the safety of its students. Some schools, like Quinnipiac University, have already implemented a system that can track the use of students’ IDs to see when and where they have swiped their cards. Five percent of the nation’s universities have already put this new security system into place.
According to the New York Times, Linda T. Maloney, Director of Public Safety at Sacred Heart University, has said that tracking card swipes has aided campus authorities in gathering evidence about sex crimes, trespassing and larcenies.
Students spend more than $240,000 over the course of four years to attend Boston University; yet study spaces are limited to being an on-campus privilege on days when Mugar is at capacity. Off-campus students are paying for residence halls through their tuition even though they don’t live in these halls. Should off-campus students have the same privileges as their on-campus counterparts?