Administration News

UPDATE: Freshmen housing requirement pulled from BOR agenda

An informational item requiring freshmen to live on campus starting in fall 2015 has been removed from the Aug. 20 Board of Regents agenda due to mixed reaction from the community.

According to a statement released Aug. 15, UH would require first time in college freshmen to live on campus starting fall 2015. Waivers to appeal the mandatory housing would be available to freshmen that demonstrate financial difficulty, medical or ADA need or have a reason that deems it counterproductive for them to live on campus. The requirement would not apply to students who live with a legal parent or guardian within 20 miles of campus or to students who are married or have a child. The presentation, which the regents were not planning to vote on, was posted to the Board of Regents website on the afternoon of Aug. 14.

“The University of Houston continues to engage the community in discussions about ways to improve student success, while providing an affordable and high-quality education,” Executive Director of Media Relations
and Digital Programming Richard Bonnin wrote in an email to The Daily Cougar. “After receiving mixed feedback from the University community, the University administration has removed an information item to discuss requiring freshman to live on campus from the Board of Regents upcoming meeting agenda.”

The presentation cited sources that mandatory freshmen housing increases academic success, and participating students are more likely to graduate within four years. Other universities that require freshmen to live on campus include Texas State University, University of North Texas, Sam Houston State University and Stephen F. Austin State University.

UH has 8,008 beds on campus, more than any university in the state except for Texas A&M University.

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  • This news is the most disappointing thing I’ve heard from the Board since their half-assed approach to grade replacement. Grow a pair y’all, and do what should have been done 40 years ago. This would have helped with so many of UH’s problems…

    • Problems with what? …eating? Finding a place to live? People manage to do that every day with out being forced into mandatory housing. Well, I take that back, there are students who struggle with finding those things because of their financial situation…so, let’s help them by tacking them with a $6,000 added cost to education.

      • Hmmm let’s see… Graduation rates. Campus life. Alumni involvement. Basically every single major problen UH faces as a university. Someone clearly didn’t research the real reasons this policy is so desperately needed.

        And what part of “financial difficulty waivers” is so hard to understand? If you couldn’t afford to live here, you wouldn’t have been required to.

        • You’ve obviously never tried to get a waiver through Housing & Dining; it’s near impossible. Seriously, try a food waiver if you live in a hall; I guarantee that they will serve you PB&J before they let you out of that agreement. …I’m quite aware of why this problem is needed; it’s funding for housing. The bonds on the buildings, especially Calhoun Lofts are gigantic; they are unable to fill it and then they built more housing.

  • I posted before, but I’m ecstatic to see this off the table. Housing wants to do this for money and also to support their deal with Armark (food services). There is no way that adding $6,000+ to the tuition of freshman is a good idea. The meal requirement is a joke.

    Also, fix the problems in the Quad and The Towers and compete with the market rather than just force students to live-on. Being short cited on the part of UH to let housing build as many beds should not be financed on the backs of students!

    • Again… not sure what you don’t understand about the words “financial difficulty waiver.” If it can’t be afforded, you don’t have to do it. Not everything is a conspiracy theory, my friend. Many years ago, I lived on campus as an undergrad at UH, and my parents lived less than 20 miles away in Pasadena. One of the best experiences I ever had… and a huge contributor to why I still donate a good portion of my hard earned money to various UH programs.

  • This is disappointing. If a student wants to commute to school, he/she should attend UHD or UHCL. That is the purpose of those school. University of Houston needs to distance itself from these commuter schools and establish itself as a fully fledged 4 year institution. This is a step backwards.

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