It’s been a rough year for dorm dwellers. Bursley had false fire alarms, East Quad had bugs in the salad, and now Markley has cockroaches in the showers and bats in the stairwells.
Residents of Mary Markley Residence Hall’s fifth-floor Blagdon House said they regularly see cockroaches in the bathroom.
“There was one in the shower this morning,” LSA freshman Lisa Hanson said.
Her roommate, LSA freshman Nadia Makki, has also had a confrontation with a cockroach.
She said she found one in the shower about a month ago and ran back to her room.
“The concept of getting clean with something that is symbolically so dirty is terrible,” she said.
And they’re big. Makki held her thumb and forefinger about 3 inches apart to illustrate the bugs’ length.
Both Hanson and Makki said they complained to their resident adviser, who passed their concerns on to the hall’s front desk. Their resident adviser told them that the hall would not be fumigated unless cockroaches were found elsewhere in the building, which is home to almost 1,200 students.
“I guess there’s nothing you can do in a building this old,” Makki said.
LSA freshman Christine Muscat hasn’t run into cockroaches in the shower, but she did find one in the corner of the bathroom.
Sona Kotecha and Emma Stensaas, both LSA freshmen, said they haven’t had encounters with the cockroaches, but that there is another pest menacing them while they wash.
“There are flies all over our shower,” said Kotecha. “They’re like gnats – kind of.”
LSA junior Tim Musial, a Markley front desk attendant, said student complaints are passed on to FIXIT, a division of University Housing that maintains the residence halls.
Residents of the fifth floor of Elliot House, also in Markley, said they saw a bat in the stairwell on Tuesday night.
“There was a bat right outside our hall and it flew in the stairwell,” said LSA freshman Lauren Perlin. “Some girls shut the door so it wouldn’t fly into our hall.”
LSA freshman Lizzie Fuhr said she didn’t see the bat, but she did hear people screaming and rushing out of the building.
The hall’s RA, education junior Leslie Kehoe, said someone called the University’s plant operations division, which maintains University buildings. But the bat managed escape on its own before help arrived.
“They opened the door and the bat flew out,” Musial said.
University Housing Spokesman Alan Levy said bats occasionally fly into buildings. He was unable to confirm any specific complaints of cockroaches.
He said students facing pest problems should contact University Housing, which has immediate access to exterminators.
But bugs are also just a part of life, whether students live on- or off-campus, Levy said.
“We will respond very quickly if we hear reports,” he said.
Levy said Housing is always trying to keep bugs out of residence halls.
“We’re doing preventative work all the time,” he said.
Despite the minor trauma some students suffer when they find big black insects in the shower, Markley residents said they were taking the problem in stride.
“It’s part of our college experience,” Makki said, adding that she plans to tell her children about the year she lived with cockroaches.