Spring break is usually a wonderful opportunity for students and professors to take a much-needed break amidst a chaotic semester. Most use the week for extravagant vacations or just time to breathe.

I always thought my senior year I would do something special with all of my friends, but this year I have something even better: a wonderful internship in New York City! I have a family vacation coming up in the summer, so I honestly don’t mind that I’ll be working over the week, especially since I love my job. However, I quickly realized that students who plan on staying on campus need to pay $75 per night.

I’ve heard of this rule before for previous breaks, but thought that if I reached out to Residence Life and told them my situation then I could potentially stay without paying the additional fee. After all, I’m a senior student who has an internship in the city four days a week. If I went home it would add an additional two hours to my commute, and the final cost would be equal to my entire paycheck. 

Still, I was met with a response that read “permission will not be given to students because of their need to pursue outside employment over the break.” I was honestly shocked reading this because, in my mind, we go to college to get a job. So why would the university not grant students housing when they are finding workplace opportunities?

The university already keeps the heat on so the pipes don’t freeze and they don’t shut off electricity or water. What exactly would we be paying extra in the first place? If it’s to pay employees over break, there should just be a disclaimer that the dining services, facilities and maintenance will not be here which would be perfectly fine. I’m not on a dining plan anyway! It seems like it’s just another cash grab at this point. 

Athletes have games and practices over the break, but they don’t need to pay an additional fee – which of course, they should not be expected to – but why would other students need to? For students who don’t even have a job, what if they live across the country and plane tickets are hundreds of dollars they can’t afford? Are they stuck paying an enormous fee either way?

I’m not sure why students would need to pay money to stay in their own room or apartment over the break, but even in circumstances where it does cost the university money, I feel that the institution’s income is enough to cover our stay for a week. All students pay a flat fee for housing at the beginning of the year – single rooms costing over $12,000! I can’t seem to understand what the extra $525 would do except put students in a stressful situation and give the university more money for no reason.

About The Author

-- Senior I Executive Editor I English Creative Writing & Digital Journalism --

Brooke is a senior English Creative Writing and Digital Journalism major, with minors in Film, Television & Media and Editing & Publishing. She plans to pursue a career in screenwriting after graduation.

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