By FRANCO FINO
This past semester, individuals from the Office of Residence Life and student government collaborated on a proposal that would allow commuting students to rent dorm rooms for a reasonable price.
Brendan Whelan, the Commuter Student Vice President of Manhattanville College, originally approached the Director of Residence Life, Benjamin Grant, to begin the process of writing the proposal.
“I wrote the proposal in two weeks of careful planning and then revised it for another week and a half,” said Whelan, stressing the importance of seeking out opinions from commuter students.
At the beginning of every week, on Monday, students have the ability to contact the Office of Residence Life to book a dorm room for the price of $20. Currently, there are three dorm rooms available to rent in Spellman Hall.
According to Whelan, the process of renting a dorm room is as easy as showing up to the Office of Residence Life and paying for the room, in which a member of Res. Life will give you a key to stay the night. He mentioned that the rentable rooms will have freshly made sheets, and will be attended to every afternoon to prepare for another student.
“If [commuter students] know they don’t have to drive home at two in the morning for a half-hour or so, and they can just stay here, it makes a big difference,” said Whelan.
The Commuter Student Vice President stressed the importance of creating an environment that commuter students can feel comfortable in.
“Every student, whether you live here or not, should feel comfortable and should enjoy the school as much as anyone else regardless of living here or not,” said Whelan. “[Commuters] should feel as welcomed as residential students.”
Whelan pointed out that commuting students make up a fairly significant amount of the number of individuals that attend Manhattanville College.
“Our commuter population is roughly about 30 percent. Maybe it’s not the biggest number or even the smallest number, but the important thing is that [commuting students] are a significant portion of the population at Manhattanville.”
The Commuter Student Vice President also mentioned that he would like to see more commuting students get involved with campus life, noting that traditional fliers are just not effective enough in spreading the word to commuters about campus events.
“We need to start utilizing social-media,” said Whelan. “Fliers are not always as productive.”
Whelan said he recognizes that students are more likely to find out about an event through social-media platforms like Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.
According to Whelan, his goal for this semester is to connect residential and commuter students through quick social events, in which students may find it easier to “grow a bond” between one another, making campus life more enjoyable for everyone. He also joked around about the idea of having events with food involved.
“Food events always seems to attract students,” said Whelan.
As of press time, any student seeking to rent a dorm room can go to the Office of Residence Life during the hours of 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM.