Ayesha Suhail, a resident of the University’s Family
Housing, was walking with her children when, to her dismay, they
came upon an undergraduate couple being “quite

Eston Bond
LSA freshman Alyssa Berriger browses through potential dorm decorations at a poster sale in the Michigan Union yesterday.

“I have three kids. They know a little bit about that
stuff because they watch TV but that’s too much exposure.
… I didn’t like that,” Suhail said.

Despite this incident, Suhail said the recent move-in of
undergraduates from Vera Baits Residence Hall into Northwood I, II,
and III has not been as bad as expected.

“We were told that there would be drinking and shouting
and that hasn’t been happening so far. Fifty undergraduates
have moved in so far and they are mostly girls and they are good
girls,” she said.

In total, 210 students have moved into the Northwood apartments
according to Housing spokesman Alan Levy. Many residents of
Northwood I, II and III reported only minimal problems with there
new neighbors — such as occasional loud music, which has been
turned off when requested. In July, University Housing announced
that freshman enrollment had exceeded expectation by 400 students
and that administrators would be relocating upperclassmen to Family
Housing in order to create dorm space for first year students.

Because the University guarantees on-campus housing to all
freshman upon completion of the appropriate procedures,
upperclassmen from Baits were shifted to Northwood I, II, and III
— apartment units that until now were reserved for single
mothers, graduate students, and families. To make space for the
upperclassmen, some families from Northwood I, II and III were in
turn given the option to move to vacant apartment in Northwood IV
or V and keep their previous, cheaper rent.

“Everyone is in a permanent residence hall space so
we’re very pleased about that. That (was) the
objective,” Levy said. “Some of these students
certainly raised concerns during the summer and we worked as best
we could to accommodate and will continue to try.”

He added that many students were pleased with the relocation and
found that it worked well for them.

“I like living in Northwood better because it’s more
peaceful than staying in the dorms. It gives you a sense of being
able to get away from school. In the dorms everyone is always
talking abut school,” said Engineering senior Dorian Simmons.
“It’s a lot more of a homey feeling.”

Simmons, who resided in Baits last year, was given a choice
— like other upperclassmen in that residence hall — to
either move off campus or relocate and keep the same rent they were
paying for dorm living. He opted to move to Family Housing and was
placed in Northwood III.

“I can’t complain, moving up from a single to an
apartment. I also stay with my friend now (whereas) in a dorm I
would be staying with some random guy,” he said.

If students who are moving have voiced no opposition to the
relocation, some Family Housing residents, in the last two months,
have organized protests, written letters, and met with
administrators in an effort to preserve Family Housing.

These concerns have been voiced in the past couple months by
Family Housing residents led by Heather Albee- Scott.

Citing the lapse of Family Housing as the major problem,
Albee-Scott and others have made a case against the relocation of
undergraduates based on rent disparities as well as the destruction
of an international and family-oriented community.

Much of the anger of Northwood IV and V residents stems from the
fact that those families which moved from Northwood I, II, and III
to make room for undergraduates will continue to pay the rent they
did in their previous apartment while living in a larger one.

Protesters also argued that Family Housing is a support system
for students with families and breaking apart this close-knit
community creates hardships for single mothers and particularly
international students, who also live in the housing units.

Although the relocation has already taken place, Albee-Scott
said residents of Family Housing hope to focus their energy on
another goal: encouraging the University to consider building
another residence hall.

Albee-Scott said she hopes to enlist the help of parents of
undergraduates students who were unhappy with the move to Family

The University has frequently tossed around the idea of building
a new hall on north campus, but no plans have been finalized.

Susana Adame, an LSA fifth year senior, who has been living in
Northwood V with her children, said it is too early to tell. Adame
added that the relocation continues to cause concerns about a slow
elimination of Family Housing, which protesters have been pointing
out since the relocation was first announced.

Similarly, Falana English, a Nursing senior who lives with her
three children in Northwood V, said that she has heard of no
problems thus far but still feels that University Housing has
overstepped its boundaries through this move. “If
they’ve taken away (Northwood I, II, and III), who’s to
say they won’t do something else? They‘ve stepped into
our safe haven,” English said.

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