By Ellen Garnett
The word “forced,” to start off with, is intimidating. According to the Simmons website under the Campus Life tab, these “forced” triples or doubles are actually defined as “expanded occupancy rooms,” which means that they are smaller than the real triples and doubles.
For me, living in an expanded occupancy triple works out well. People keep stopping by our dorm saying, “Wow, you got gypped!” but did we really? Sure, we have less space than the actual triples, which are located in South, Arnold, Dix, Evans, and Smith, but space ceases to be a problem when you get along with your roommates. And if you DON’T get along with your roommates, as I have heard from several Sharks, you’re in luck.
To make up for the limited space in a “forced” double or triple, the Office of Student Life and Affairs (OSLA) provides us with some pretty sweet deals. Keep in mind that these activities are meant to break the ice with your roommates if you haven’t already. In the Triple Play green folder that one of your roommates was provided with when they first checked in on move-in day, you will find three activity options that you and your fellow roommates can choose to participate in — for FREE.
I can’t seem to emphasize that word enough. It’s a beautiful word when you’re a broke college student, like most of us are. These entertainment activities include three passes to any Simmons L.E.A.P. class, three movie tickets to Regal Cinemas at the Landmark Center, or three passes to the New England Aquarium. But wait, there’s more! There is also a study-break voucher, which offers each roommate a free beverage at Java City (aka Common Grounds).
While “forced” rooms can seem uncomfortable at times when you constantly have to scooch out of the way of your roommates, Simmons has got your back, and you’re also not alone. There are 24 expanded occupancy triples in Simmons Hall, six in Morse, and 15 expanded occupancy doubles in North. Last year, according to Housing Coordinator Sarah Cyr-Mutty, there were 28 expanded occupancy triples at the start of the year and no expanded occupancy doubles. Worse comes to worst, the option for de-tripling or de-doubling is a possibility.
“We are already looking to be able to get people out of those expanded occupancy spaces, which has been our goal all along,” said Cyr-Mutty. She explained that they had not anticipated the large size of the incoming first-year class, which helped account for the increased amount of expanded occupancy rooms, but the major factor was that they had twice the amount of seniors going through housing selection than usual.
As the transition into college life may be difficult, especially for those feeling cramped in expanded occupancy rooms, students should take advantage of their “forced” life and, if they they have to, drag their roommates out to spend some not-so-forced quality time