By Chris Boline
Complaints from a University of Nevada, Reno student, who called in during the Nevada Sagebrush Rundown radio show on Wolf Pack Radio, have raised bigger questions for the future of Residential Life at the university.
Kate Gram, a senior biology student, was a resident at Argenta Hall from August 2010 to May 2011. According to Gram, she has three main issues with the residence halls: .She was forced to pay $783.75 for a dorm room that she never used due to a family emergency. She is also upset that the waiting list for the Sierra Garage has become longer due to faculty parking in the garage because of the limited number of parking space caused by campus construction. Finally, she believes meal plans should roll over since students must pay up front.
Richard Corn, a former Resident Assistant who was involved in the Residence Hall Association (RHA) for two years, explained why the meal plan situation is what it is today.
“Meal plans originally used to roll over,” Corn said. “What was happening was they were losing lots of revenue. If you think about it from a business standpoint, you would just be giving the swipes to all of your friends. That’s how it was back in 2009, but they made the new meal plan to control the inflow and outflow of customers.”
Not only does Gram feel she’s lost money on meal plans, but she feels entitled to the money she spent on the dorm. However, when Gram attempted to make an appeal to the fee, her lawyer suggested otherwise.
“It just seem like the process of appealing is kind of ridiculous,” Gram said. “I talked to my lawyer and he just said I would end up paying three times the amount even if I won.”
Construction has affected the number of parking spaces available, especially since a parking lot was lost when the Living Learning Community was built in 2012.
“… Res Life basically took away a parking lot in order to put up a new hall (the LLC), which in turn definitely increased the demand of parking,” said Cody Heimerdinger, a recent UNR graduate and former member of RHA.
Students living in the residence halls aren’t the only people whose parking has been affected by the construction. Construction of the new graduate student housing facilities has caused a decrease in parking spaces available near the intramural fields as well.
Student Megan Breyer said she’s been struggling having to live on campus since she was a freshman last year in the LLC.
“(Construction)basically just made it the most stressful situation to get on campus every day,” Breyer said. “It closed off parking lots that people didn’t utilize a lot, congests traffic and it makes it more difficult to get to class.”
Gram voiced her hope that the future of Residential Life and parking services becomes more streamlined, so students who plan on living in the residence halls understand they’re going to be faced with a limited number of parking spaces.
“Both parking services and Res Life don’t know what’s going on,” Gram said. “Even students like me are hearing one thing from res life and another from parking services. Hopefully, this makes other students more knowledgeable of the situation that they’re getting into.”
Res Life was not contacted in time for comment and parking services has not yet been contacted.
Chris Boline can be reached at email@example.com