New housing plan limits freedom

By Amanda Ayers

Contributing Writer

After hearing of the University’s plan to reduce the off-campus housing available to students, I had mixed feelings. I trusted the University’s judgment but struggled with the issue because it seemed to me that having the opportunity, especially as a senior, to live off-campus would make the transition to the “real world” after graduation much smoother.

There is a certain freedom and responsibility intrinsic to living on your own. After pondering this issue more, I feel as though the ideal solution would be to decrease off-campus student housing but not to the extent that has been rumored. By finding a good balance, this new development could be bring about the best of both worlds.

What I think characterizes the University is its feeling of community. Having an increased number of students living on campus would certainly foster this more. The University truly believes in the value of learning both in and outside of the classroom.

There are highly knowledgeable individuals within the University that pride themselves on being able to structure residence halls that have the potential for deep student learning and growth in this context.

I think that by having more, but not all, students live on campus, the University will be able to maintain more control over residential life and have more of a positive influence on it. By allowing a large handful of students to live off-campus, this will simultaneously give those students who desire the opportunity to feel more independent from the campus the ability to do so.

Also, the off-campus houses that these students choose to live in will be better because the school will only keep those properties that they feel meet their high standards.

This plan will also be efficient and beneficial for the township of Lewisburg and surrounding community. The housing that does not meet the University’s standards can be converted to retail space that will certainly better the entire area. The University could play an integral part in maintaining Lewisburg’s charm and vibrant economy through investment in new businesses, which would subsequently lead to more jobs.

This area of converted old housing will act as a “gateway neighborhood” to connect the campus and the downtown commercial district. It would help unify the entire community, which would not only help Lewisburg but also the University to thrive.

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