University housing makes accommodations in response to COVID-19


File Photo/The Lion's Roar

Residential students will have to follow a new set of guidelines in Fall 2020 in order to adhere to social distancing guidelines on campus.

University Housing recently made adjustments to its housing policies for the upcoming semester.

Changes are being made to align with the recommendations of the CDC and the Louisiana Department of Health in order to reduce the risk of exposure and spread of COVID-19.

University Housing will enforce social distancing measures for common areas and markets in residence halls.

Robin Parker, director of marketing and strategic initiatives for Auxiliary Services, explained how residence halls will be subject to safety protocols.

Masks will be required in common spaces throughout buildings, guests will be limited to only students living within the same building, only one guest per room at one time will be allowed, etc.,” said Parker. “Residents will receive details regarding social distancing protocols upon check-in.”

Social distancing rules will also apply to residence halls with markets and shared laundry rooms, and there will be floor decals in service areas across campus instructing students on how far apart they must stand, according to Parker. 

For resident assistants, no updates have been given regarding their duties for the upcoming semester.

Gabby Messina, Resident Assistant for Ascension Hall, is expecting to know more about the details during her training.

“We actually don’t know yet, but we’ll probably find out during training in two weeks,” shared Messina. “At the moment, resident assistants know just about as much as everyone else.”

University Housing still plans to offer double-occupancy spaces for students, but no more than two students will be able to share a bathroom.

Besides these accommodations, standard operating procedures will remain the same for the time being. Housing applications are still processed on a first-come, first-serve basis.

Roommate requests are also following standard operating procedures, according to Parker.

Roommate requests are made by the applicant and the Housing Office does its best to assign mutual requests together,” said Parker. “However, due to demand, we cannot guarantee a room assignment or roommate request match.”

Room selection for the Fall 2020/Spring 2021 semester will be open from 9:00 a.m. through 4:00 p.m. on July 21-22, according to an email from University Housing. Room selection for Honors students is July 13-15 at the same times.The email also instructs students to log in to the housing application portal to view their scheduled time slot to select their room for the 2020-2021 academic year. In preparation for on-campus living, students are advised to view the Fall 2020 Housing Frequently Asked Questions found on the University Housing website.