March 13, 2018
Student housing to be consolidated on West Side of SIU Campus
SIU Carbondale will bring students together in residence halls on the west side of campus this fall in order to increase student engagement, according to SIU Chancellor Carlo Montemago.
Currently, the campus has two major housing areas: the “towers,” which consists of two currently open high-rise residence halls, and a number of smaller, three-story residence halls on the west side of campus called Thompson Point.
“By bringing students together in Thompson Point, we can continue to build a tightly knit, engaged community,” Montemagno said. “It will also increase traffic to our Student Center, which should be a centerpiece of campus life.”
Building engagement with closer-knit communities
Montemagno acknowledged that enrollment declines make the move possible but says that the change is driven primarily by efforts to build engagement and enhance retention.
“As we rebuild enrollment in the years ahead, we will always have the option of having students on both sides of campus again,” he said. “For now, we can best serve students by making sure that they are part of a vibrant and active community.”
Jon Shaffer, director of University Housing, said the move will also create efficiencies that will help the university minimize future room and board costs for students.
“We can effectively serve students in one dining hall instead of two, for example,” he said.
Commitment to living-learning communities remains
Shaffer said that new students who have signed housing contracts for fall will not be affected, since they have not yet been assigned rooms. About 500 to 600 returning students have already selected rooms for the fall, and the housing office will reach out to them to work through changes.
He said the move will also affect the location of living-learning communities for students who share similar majors or interests. Currently, there are communities on both sides of the campus.
“We are continuing to grow the number of living-learning communities on campus,” Shaffer said. “While the location may change, our commitment remains the same.”
University Hall, campus apartments will remain open
In addition to the residence halls on the west side of campus, the university will continue to offer housing at University Hall, Wall and Grand Apartments and Evergreen Terrace.
The Gathering Place Snack Shop, currently housed in Grinnell Hall, will move to University Hall.