Heat Wave Displaces Rubin Hall Residents

Rubin Hall residents were temporarily moved to cots during the heat wave.


Era Gjonbalaj

Rubin residents lie on temporary cots during the heat wave.

Victor Porcelli, Deputy News Editor

On their third night in the city, first-year Rubin Residence Hall residents were welcomed by a New York City heat wave. Without air conditioning in their rooms, residents were left with the option of sweating it out or sleeping on cots in the limited space on the first and second floor.

With temperatures in the 90s and humidity making it feel like 100 to 105, the National Weather Service issued a heat advisory for New York City which began on Tuesday at 11 a.m. A heat advisory is called for when temperatures are expected to reach 95 to 99 for at least two consecutive days or 100 to 104 for any given length of time.

The searing temperatures could affect Rubin residents’ living and health conditions. Currently, Rubin is not equipped with air conditioning on the student residential floors, and the university prohibits residents from having air conditioning units or air coolers in their rooms. However, residents are able to have portable fans. Rubin serves as a low-cost housing option for first-year students as an alternative to more expensive first-year residence halls.

At around 2:00 p.m. on Tuesday, Rubin’s building leadership team sent an email out to its approximately 680 residents about alternative housing options for the evening. The email included a form where students could request a cot in the second-floor air-conditioned lounge, and if the requests reach capacity, those residents would be sent to another nearby residence hall.

“Due to space limitations, we are trying to identify how many Rubin residents would be interested in taking advantage of this option,” the email read. “If the interests of the community were to exceed our in-hall capacity, we would activate a secondary location at a nearby residence hall.”

Other options included staying out longer to enjoy Welcome Week events and staying with a friend in another residence hall. Brittany, Founders, Goddard and Third North Residence Halls all have cots at their respective Resource Centers. For most first-years, tonight is their third night in a new city which could leave them with few options to stay elsewhere.

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  • Rubin’s second floor study lounge where students have the option to stay tonight.

  • Inside Rubin’s second floor study lounge

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“We also want to encourage all Rubin students to continue to stay hydrated and to take advantage of the many Welcome Week events being hosted by the Center for Student Life and your individual academic departments. These events provide opportunities for you to be in air conditioned spaces, meet your peers, explore the culture of NYU and the city, and have a ton of fun!”

Gallatin first-year Juraj Jursa said he agreed with the sentiment of the email.

“During Welcome Week, I wouldn’t spend much time in my room anyway, so I suppose it doesn’t make that much of a difference,” Jursa said.

University spokesperson John Beckman echoed Rubin’s advisory to residents and spoke on how residence halls handle such situations.

“The university is aware of the heat condition and will continue to closely monitor it.” Beckman wrote in an email to WSN. “When we have hot weather such as we do now, Housing makes cots available in air conditioned spaces for Rubin residents who are bothered by the heat.”

Multiple first-years saw the potentially-bad news in a positive light. CAS first-year Patrick Sun said sleeping on cots in Rubin’s lounge could improve relations among the first-years.

“This is a good opportunity for community bonding,” Sun said.

GLS first-year Hannah Schacht told WSN that despite the poor conditions, first-years were handling the situation well.

We ended up having a sort of movie night using one of the computers which was fun, and I slept better than I have in my room,” Schacht wrote in an email to WSN.

Email Victor Porcelli at [email protected].