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Fall Housing Update

Re: Fall Housing Update
To: All Campus
August 12, 2021
 
Dear Campus Community,
 
Earlier this week, we learned that Merced Station apartment construction was delayed, which added to already tight local housing availability for our students. Having polled all students, we have learned that about 1000 students are now seeking local housing. We wanted to circle back and share how we are addressing the housing situation.
 
  • We are seeking approval to delay the start of in-person instruction until August 30. The start of fall instruction will continue to be August 25, but we anticipate that by providing the additional days before in-person instruction begins will allow more time to resolve the housing situation. We will notify the campus as soon as we know whether or not we may make this change. We will continue to provide move-in dates for on-campus housing as scheduled and honor any previous plans students and families have made.
 
  • We have over 500 students with leases at Merced Station who will be provided with local hotel accommodations and campus transportation until their apartment space is available (expected in mid to late September).
 
  • We are seeking to add additional beds on campus, pending fire marshal approval. (Note: These are beds in the new, south campus residence halls designed for triple occupancy and currently booked as doubles.)
 
  • We have invited first year students to participate in a new Virtual First Year Program. We have a small cohort of new students who have expressed interest in remaining remote and taking our small suite of custom online course offerings. Those students will be cancelling their campus housing reservations and we will reassign their spaces to other students.
 
  • We have reserved 120 bed spaces in local hotels (and have an additional 240 pending reservations) to provide more housing should the above options be insufficient for our fall student needs. Transportation would be provided to any students housed in these hotel options.
 
  • If you have a room or home to rent to students, please consider posting it on our Off Campus Housing website. We will continue to update this daily with any new postings.
 
Our course offerings will continue to be predominantly in-person and we do not anticipate any changes to modality of courses. However, we are actively monitoring public health conditions and have multiple contingency scenarios in place to pivot our instructional modality as necessary. Additional instructor messaging is forthcoming regarding our classroom operations under COVID.
 
Thank you for your patience as we have developed plans to address the tight housing situation. This has likely been a very stressful situation for our students and we appreciate their perseverance and dedication to learning in these challenging times.
 
Charles Nies
Vice Chancellor
Student Affairs
 
Sarah Frey
Vice Provost and Dean of Undergraduate Education