Marc Wais, vice president of Global Student Affairs, opened the final University Committee on Student Life meeting by praising the committee for all the work they put into this past semester, specifically their response to the Typhoon Haiyan in the Philippines.
During his presentation, Wais said due to renovations to Hayden residence hall beginning summer 2014, the university has rented three hotels belonging to the Affinia chain in Midtown to accommodate the 675 beds that Hayden residence hall would normally provide. All the rooms will be suites, and the university will also provide MetroCards. University Hall residence hall will also become a freshman residence hall, which occurred during the 2012-13 academic year when Brittany residence hall closed for renovations.
The audience expressed concerns over the distance of the commute from Midtown to Washington Square Park, but Steinhardt freshman Grant Roth said the hotels will serve as a positive alternative to Hayden.
“I think the university’s commitment to [a] four-year housing guarantee is extremely important,” Roth said. “I commend the university, and especially the administrators who deal with this issue, for their guarantee and responsibility to their students.”
The loss of the Hayden dining hall was also addressed and, although the university has not provided a definite decision for alternative options, Wais said an added dining area in Weinstein residence hall is a possibility.
He also said the tradition of offering commuter students the opportunity to stay in the Commuter Hotel during finals week will continue, but he said Greenwich Hotel, whichserved as the commuter hotel in past years, currently housing an overflow of residential students and cannot accommodate more.
“This year, they will be on the second floor of the commuter lounge, where there will be cots so people can study at Bobst, sleep in Kimmel and shower in Coles,” Wais said. “This will be of no cost to students.”
Wais said students will have access to HBO Go on floor TVs, smart phones and iPads starting next September.
After these announcements, Carlo Ciotoli, associate vice president of NYU Student Health, presented a student health survey, which was conducted in the spring of 2013.
Jessica Shaw, an undergraduate senator on the Steinhardt Government Standing Committee, reflected on her first semester as a senator.
“Something that UCSL started this semester with was working on collaboration with all the schools,” Shaw said. “This was a big planning semester to make our campus feel smaller and more close-knit and put together.”
Kavish Harjai is a staff writer. Email him at [email protected]