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Happy Spring! There is still snow on the ground here in Hanover, but the new academic term will begin soon. This is a good time to talk about residential life and residential facilities planning at Dartmouth.
Students who will be returning next year have some choices to make, and some deadlines to meet. Undergraduate Housing will communicate regularly by email with all rising sophomores, juniors and seniors about their options and the steps they need to follow to receive a room assignment. Deadlines for registering and applying for various options begin in early April. Please remind your students to read these messages carefully, and to consult with Undergraduate Housing staff, UGAs, or House ADs if they have questions. Our staff will be tabling in 53 Commons, at spring term House kick-off dinners, and other residential life events to provide advice and guidance as students plan for next year.
Most will live in the residence halls associated with their House Communities. Given the comings and goings of the D-Plan, the Houses provide a home base and offer ongoing House activities for their members. Students interested in living with others who share particular interests may apply for space in one of our twenty living learning communities. Members of Greek Letter Organizations may request beds in Greek facilities from their organizations, and seniors may seek beds in our senior apartments on the west and east ends of campus. This process will be complete by early May.
As you know, the College has decided not to increase undergraduate enrollment. We do, however, need additional beds to meet current demand, and we want to make improvements in our older facilities. With Trustee approval, we are planning for the construction of 350 new beds in the next few years to provide “swing space” that will support our comprehensive renovation plan. In the meantime, we will continue to be at full capacity in fall and spring terms. As in previous years, we expect to carry a waitlist for fall housing starting in early May. We will work closely with the students affected. Thank you in advance for your support and understanding as we move forward.
Finally, you may have seen the announcement of my transition back to teaching in Spanish and Comparative Literature this summer. It has been an honor to serve as the Dean of the College these last three years. I will continue to work with our incredibly dedicated student affairs staff through the end of this academic year and the transition to my successor over the course of the summer. We have a lot to accomplish in the coming months: serving individual student needs, delivering House Community and campus-wide programming, welcoming newly admitted '22s, preparing for First Year and Sophomore Family Weekends, finalizing our new leadership development sophomore summer curriculum, and supporting our graduates as they get ready to march at Commencement in June. We'll be sharing more about many of these topics as spring term unfolds.
With best wishes,