***Editor’s note: For details about each residence hall, staff writer Tyler Despenza scoured archived copies of The Xavier Herald at the Library Resource Center. The following includes excerpts from newspaper reports.***
While some students consider on-campus living as a way to meet people and form friendships, others feel living conditions in all four of Xavier University’s residence halls are poor. Based on responses to the Student Customer Service Satisfaction Survey regarding dorm services and maintenance, 47 percent of the respondents who currently live on campus are dissatisfied with their experiences with residence life, specifically dorm services and maintenance. There were 300 out of 502
respondents who live on campus. Of those 300 respondents:
• 29 live in the freshmen’s men’s dorm, St. Michael’s, also known at the Mike’s. The dorm opened in 1957, named for the Archangel Michael, who led God’s army. Originally, the building was reserved for sophomores, juniors and seniors. The building opened with 95 rooms, 17 of which were private, 75 were semi-private, and three were for guests.
• 119 live in the freshman women’s dorm, Katharine Drexel Residence Hall, or KD, which is named for Xavier’s founder St. Katharine Drexel. The dorm opened in 1969, originally accommodating 150 women. Three additional floors were added to KD as the freshmen women’s population grew.
• 82 live in the Learning Living Center, also called The L or LLC. The L, originally former Foltz Coffee Warehouse that was converted into a five-story hall with apartment-style dorm rooms, opened in 1998. The hall was recognized in the Contractor Magazine as the 1998 Public Architecture Project of the Year.
• 70 live in the coed dorm, St. Martin de Porres, or de Porres. De Porres opened in 2003. It is named for St. Martin de Porres, who is considered the first Black saint of the Americas. The hall was designated to house Xavier’s upperclassmen, with seven floors and a capacity of 514 students.
The living conditions that students detailed in the survey’s optional comments sections and interviews with residents showed they are satisfied with the friendships and bonds they create while living in the dorms, but they’re not pleased with where they have to sleep at night. Also, a majority of students feel thate residence halls are a bit too pricy for what the lacking quality they revive.
The University Responds
Marion Bracy, vice president of facility planning and management, oversees all construction and maintenance on campus. In an interview with the survey project team, Bracy addressed some of the survey comments. “I walk through the residence halls and I have seen some things that I am not pleased with,” Bracy said. “We are making some improvements and internal changes with our personnel and with house keeping, and we will continue to make changes to address dormitory issues. We’re here to service our customers, who are faculty, staff, students, alumni and parents, and we have to make sure we satisfy those customers.”
Bracy said that unlike students believe, funding for dorm maintenance and updating does not come from housing fees. Funds from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and money generated from operational services allowed dorms to be renovated and maintained for several years after Hurricane Katrina flooded the campus in August 2005 “The majority of the money wespend on campus actually comes through federal funding,” Bracy said. “The money you see spent on campus comes from external sources and not necessarily from student tuition.” “We plan to improve our service and we plan to monitor our service and make sure that we have the best that we can have. We want to make sure that the residence halls are clean and that they’re functional,” Bracy added.
Bracy urges students to report problems or problems concerns by calling 504.520.7321 or sending an email to email@example.com.
Anonymous Student Comments About Housing
“Overall I like living in the dorms; I think
it’s a great way to meet people. I just don’t
like how it takes a while for things in my
room to get fixed after I put in a work order.
I put in one for my AC about five times and
it still isn’t fixed,” said an LLC resident.
“I came to college to exercise my skills that
I have acquired over a time in preparation
to be an adult. While I do understand that
many rules are for our safety, I should not be
treated as a child. There should be another
system in place for visitation so we do not
feel like our privacy is being invaded or that
we are being judged for having company. ”
“None of these buildings are fit to live in. De
Porres is the most “live-able”. The Mikes and
KD need to be gutted out and remodeled
completely. The Living Learning Center
needs to be torn down completely. Deporres
just needs some major cleaning done to it.
All of these building have mold in it. If health
inspection people came, I’m sure they would
shut these buildings down,” said anonymous
De Porress resident
“The maintenance is horrible, especially
in places like the Living Learning Center.
There is a mold issue every semester
campus-wide in general, and I feel more
should be done in terms of maintenance.
I lived on campus for 3 years, so I have
personal experience with the dormitories.”
“The RAs come into your room when you
are not around for no reason at times. I
had 3 knock on my door one time and
then when I was approaching the door
they opened it. When asked the reason
for them coming into my room they said,
‘I did not think anyone was here.’Very
unprofessional and I feel my privacy is
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