Not welcomed for the holidays

Brenna Wu

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The final week of school is here and I can feel Christmas in my fingertips.

Luckily for me, I only live about a mile from USI, so I decided to go home last Sunday to get everything unpacked.

The last final I have is at 8 a.m. Wednesday. Housing sent out an email last Tuesday regarding the university closing and whether or not I needed to submit a form requesting to stay longer.

Students are allowed to stay until Dec. 21, free of charge with the submission and approval of a late stay form. If the student wants to stay past Dec. 21, then he or she will have a charge of $150 added to their account.

My cousin, Brittney Byrd, asked her RA what might happen if a student would forget something. She wanted to know if she could come back, because she, like me, lives so close. When her RA found out the answer, she told my cousin that if a student was caught trying to get back into the dorms, a trespassing fee of $300 would be added to their account.

$300.

That seems excessive.

I understand that some students live extremely far away – my tennis teammate’s roommate is from California, so she does not have the opportunity to come back – but what about students who do stay in town and need a home for the holidays?

Most families will share great hospitality, but unfortunately, a ton of homes are full with family from out of town.

Students should not have to pay the fee – or any fee – for wanting to stay on campus grounds.

The university does not need to be open. Some students would just like that security of having a home if plans do not work out in the end.

Think of what college students could do with $150:

  • Buy a week’s worth of gas
  • Buy Christmas presents
  • Get groceries for the week
  • Pay off other bills
  • Buy dozens and dozens of gum
  • Buy new textbooks for the upcoming semester

The money that would go towards that fee could be used for so many other things besides keeping students away from a home this Christmas.

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