On-campus apartment living will soon become a reality at Bluffton University.
Haustein Hall and Hirschler Hall in Riley Court were originally built as residential spaces in 1970. Some of the units were used as office spaces, until 1988, when the complexes became entirely office space. They were used as office space until late this summer. Effective in the spring 2017 semester, they will once again become home to about 36 Bluffton students.
They are now being transformed into apartments to help support independent living on campus. The faculty and staff who had offices in the buildings were moved to other spaces on campus to make room for the apartments.
There will be six apartments total, three in Hauenstein Hall and three in Hirschler Hall, said Director of Residence Life Caleb Farmer. These apartments consist of three bedrooms, two bathrooms, a full kitchen, living room and a furnished laundry room. There will also be a common living space, similar to a lobby, on the bottom floor.
The apartments will be available for juniors and seniors interested in independent living. Each apartment will house six students. The apartments will continue to be focused on upperclassmen and give them a more independent living experience. Freshmen will not be allowed to live in the apartments, Farmer said.
Students who live in the apartments will also be allowed to move down to a commuter meal plan, which consists of five meals a week rather than the residential plans that offer either ten or fifteen meals. Students on the commuter meal plan will also get 100 Beaver Bucks.
The apartments will not have any visiting restrictions. The number of male and female apartments will be decided once final applications have been accepted and processed, Farmer said. There will be one resident advisor for the building, and she or he will have a roommate. Many students have expressed interest in the apartments, Farmer said, and because of the lack of space, students will not be allowed to “nest” in these spaces.
“One building is already full, and the other is about half full,” said Farmer.
Room draw for the apartments will be similar to the format from this year, but may have a few changes depending on student interest.
Apartment Draw for groups of six were due by Oct. 26. Apartment draw for these students occurred Thursday, Oct. 27. The applications for pairs were due Friday, Oct. 28, Apartment Draw for pairs was Nov. 1.
Students are encouraged to contact Julie DeGraw or Farmer for more information.
All photos by Taylor Cook.