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Move-in day, take two

Illustration by Megan Mulholland
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By Leah Shepherd, Daily Staff Reporter
Published October 23, 2012

When I found out in August that I would be living in Bursley Residence Hall, I called my roommate Allie and listened to her cry on the phone. Innumerable stuffy bus rides, congested lines and waking up absurdly early for class confirmed my worst fears. Allie and I quickly applied for a room swap, but we didn’t expect it to work out.

Average dorm rent:


= $1,455/month for a single, room and board

Average apartment rent:


$715/month for a single bedroom in a multi-bedroom house
+ $200/month for groceries
+ $50/month for utilities
= $965/month for a single bedroom in a multi-bedroom house, room and board

Source: University Housing Services
Analysis performed by The Michigan Daily

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To our surprise, we received a call the following Thursday, after we had already moved into Bursley, from Debra Haugen, a customer service representative with University Housing. She informed us of an available double in South Quad Residence Hall. We were ecstatic. I was going to be able to go back to my room during the day, take a nap and leave at 11 a.m. for my 11 a.m. class.

Yet after the initial excitement, Allie and I were left with the prodigious task of moving every single thing we brought with us from North Campus down to Central Campus.

I’m not going to lie: I was one of those people who brought a U-Haul to campus because a car didn’t suffice. I had two jumbo duffel bags full of clothes, a suitcase of shoes and bins full of miscellaneous items for my dorm room. If that gives you any implication on how much I brought to college, moving it all again was going to be rough.

I initially thought University Housing Services would provide help. Little did I know that my conversation with Haugen was going to be my one and only contact with the University. Haugen told us she wanted us moved in that weekend and the rest was up to us.

I imagined myself taking hundreds of bus rides from Bursley to South Quad with piles of clothes in my hands, things falling off of hangers on the bus and everything toppling out of my plastic shelves. If move-in day wasn’t stressful enough the first time, I wasn’t sure how Allie and I were going to handle move-in day take two.

Luckily, I have an older sister at the University who was generous enough to lend me her car and parents who live close enough to Ann Arbor. With no duffels and no blue bins to help us move our stuff, Allie and I started taking trips back and forth from our room in Bursley to the car to South Quad.

During my first night lying in my new bed, I wondered how anyone could move into a new room without outside resources. Without our connections, this move would have actually been impossible.

Help from University Housing Services should be provided for those going through similar situations. Haugen never called after the initial news that Thursday. It makes me wonder if she even knows that Allie and I no longer live on North Campus.